Information for Patients
A fistula is an abnormal connection between two parts inside of the body. Fistulas may develop between different organs, such as between the esophagus and the windpipe or the bowel and the vagina. They can also develop between two blood vessels, such as between an artery and a vein or between two arteries.
Some people are born with a fistula. Other common causes of fistulas include
- Complications from surgery
- Diseases, such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
Treatment depends on the cause of the fistula, where it is, and how bad it is. Some fistulas will close on their own. In some cases, you may need antibiotics and/or surgery.
- Fistula (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Gastrointestinal fistula (Medical Encyclopedia)
The urethra is the tube that allows urine to pass out of the body. In men, it's a long tube that runs through the penis. It also carries semen in men. In women, it's short and is just above the vagina. Urethral problems may happen due to aging, illness, or injury. They include
- Urethral cancer - a rare cancer that happens more often in men
- Urethral stricture - a narrowing of the opening of the urethra
- Urethritis - inflammation of the urethra, sometimes caused by infection
Urethral problems may cause pain or difficulty passing urine. You may also have bleeding or discharge from the urethra.
Doctors diagnose urethral problems using different tests. These include urine tests, x-rays and an examination of the urethra with a scope called a cystoscope. Treatment depends on the cause of the problem. It may include medicines and, in severe cases, surgery.
- Chlamydial infections - male (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Epispadias (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Meatal stenosis (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Self catheterization - female (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Self catheterization - male (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Traumatic injury of the bladder and urethra (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Urethral discharge culture (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Urethral stricture (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Urethritis (Medical Encyclopedia)
- Urinary Retention - NIH (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)