Vesicovaginal Fistula Symptoms and Treatment
The word fistula certainly doesn’t provide any sort of indication concerning the actual nature of this malady; however it is a simply enough defined condition. A fistula is essentially a hole – a hole that develops either in between two organs or a hole that develops between an organ and your skin. There are many types of fistula. For instance, a colovesical fistula is a hole that is between the vagina and the colon. Meanwhile, as its name would suggest, a rectovaginal fistula is an opening occurring between the rectum and vagina. These are common following childbirth.
A less common unintended organ passage is a vesicovaginal fistula, which is simply an opening between the vagina and the urinary tract. Normally, this occurs because of some sort of damage to soft tissue whether occurring quickly or over time. A surgery, for instance, can cause a vesicovaginal fistula. This can be due to changes within the vagina. One of the most common causes of a vesicovaginal fistula is a hysterectomy. Other causes include radiation therapy for certain kinds of cancer and tears in the perineum. An infection resulting from an episiotomy following child delivery can also cause this condition. Because of the limitations concerning healthcare in undeveloped or underdeveloped countries, this condition is much more common outside of largely developed countries. For instance, mothers struggling to deliver large infants over long periods of time in developing countries are at a substantially higher risk of acquiring fistulas.
Symptoms of this condition are not what you may think. Unlike a perianal fistula, which causes pain and discharge, a vesicovaginal fistula is typically painless. This does not, however, mean that this unusual ailment is going to go unnoticed. Because of its co involvement with the bladder, incontinence and other bladder control problems are likely. In fact, it’s not uncommon for urine to pass right on through the opening into the vagina. This can lead to an embarrassing loss of self control of bodily functions. This is the most predominant marker of a vesicovaginal fistula, and thankfully is enough to send most women headed directly to the doctor’s office.
Fistula treatment almost always involves surgery. Healing may be required before the repair is made which may involve medications. Certain conditions like an inflamed colon may complicate both the treatment and the healing of a vesicovaginal fistula. Your doctor will need to determine the best course of treatment for you based on your specific condition.
Thankfully, this condition is not particularly common, and it’s very pronounced symptoms make it easy to diagnose making prompt treatment a quick reality. You should seek medical treatment immediately if you suspect that you might be having the symptoms of a vesicovaginal fistula.