Whether due to a medical condition or a sudden injury, thousands of people suffer from anal fistulas every year. These small channels that develop near the end of the bowel can cause serious discomfort and medical complications. Thankfully, there are many different treatment options for anal fistulas.

More and more, people are choosing fistula plugs as an answer. But why might this solution be right for you?

What Makes a Fistula Plug Different?

Fistula plugs are a relatively new procedure. During this minimally invasive surgery, the channel of the anal fistula is stopped up with a plug. There are actually several types of plugs that can be used. However, they all serve the same purpose: closing up the fistula.

A colorectal surgeon will place the plug into the interior opening of the fistula without having to cut any of the sphincter muscle. The plug, which is made from small intestinal submucosa, will then be stitched into place. Over time, the surrounding tissue will grow into it, making the plug a permanent part of the anus and eliminating any need for removal.

The Healing Process

Because inserting a fistula plug is a minimally invasive procedure, most patients will be able to leave the hospital the same day. The recovery process is also relatively fast, since there is no tissue removal. While patients will need to limit their physical activities during healing, they are not under as strict limitations as after other procedures. One of the most appealing parts of plugs is that the patient has a much lower risk of incontinence after surgery. This is because the sphincter muscle remains intact.

Follow-up appointments will be schedule after the surgery. These are made to allow our colorectal experts to assess how the plug is healing and confirm that there are no complications. While fistula draining will likely occur for several weeks, this is part of the healing process.

Choosing the Right Fistula Plug Surgeon

If you are searching for an end to the complications caused by your fistula, get in touch with the fistula plug doctors at the Fissure and Fistula Center of Excellence in Los Angeles. We have helped countless patients choose the right option for their unique situations. Whether you are in need of a fistula plug or any other type of fistula surgery, we can help. Contact us online or call 888.512.2312 to learn more.

Next, read more about common symptoms of anal fistulas.