Information for Patients
Your colon, also known as the large intestine, is part of your digestive system. It's a long, hollow tube at the end of your digestive tract where your body makes and stores stool. Many disorders affect the colon's ability to work properly. Some of these include
- Colorectal cancer
- Colonic polyps - extra tissue growing in the colon that can become cancerous
- Ulcerative colitis - ulcers of the colon and rectum
- Diverticulitis - inflammation or infection of pouches in the colon
- Irritable bowel syndrome - an uncomfortable condition causing abdominal cramping and other symptoms
Treatment for colonic diseases varies greatly depending on the disease and its severity. Treatment may involve diet, medicines and in some cases, surgery.
NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
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.
Vaginal problems are some of the most common reasons women go to the doctor. They may have symptoms such as
- Abnormal bleeding
One common problem is vaginitis, an inflammation of the vagina. Other problems that affect the vagina include sexually transmitted diseases, vaginal cancer, and vulvar cancer. Treatment of vaginal problems depends on the cause.