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Anastomotic-vaginal fistula (AVF) after anterior resection of the rectum for cancer - occurrence and risk factors
Örebro University Hospital.
Örebro University Hospital.
Linköping University, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Surgery . Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences. Östergötlands Läns Landsting, Centre of Surgery and Oncology, Department of Surgery in Östergötland.
Umeå University Hospital.
2010 (English)In: COLORECTAL DISEASE, ISSN 1462-8910, Vol. 12, no 4, 351-357 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective The aim of the study was to assess recto-vaginal fistula (RVF) after anterior resection of the rectum for cancer with regard to occurrence and risk factors. Method All female patients [median age 69.5 years, Union Internationale centre le Cancer (UICC) cancer stage IV in 10%] who developed a symptomatic RVF (n = 20) after anterior resection of the rectum for cancer from three separate cohorts of patients were identified and compared with those who developed conventional symptomatic leakage (n = 32), and those who did not leak (n = 338). Patient demography and perioperative data were compared between these three groups. Fourteen patient-related and surgery-related variables thought to be possible risk factors for RVF (anastomotic-vaginal fistula) were analysed. Results Symptomatic anastomotic leakage occurred in 52 (13.3%) of 390 patients. Twenty (5.1%) had an anastomotic-vaginal fistula (AVF) and 32 (8.2%) conventional leakage (CL). Patients with AVF required unscheduled re-operation and defunctioning stoma as often as those with CL. AVF was diagnosed later and more often after discharge from hospital compared with CL. Patients with AVF had lower anastomoses and decreased BMI compared with those with CL. Risk factors for AVF in multivariate analysis were anastomosis andlt; 5 cm above the anal verge (P = 0.001), preoperative radiotherapy (P = 0.004), and UICC cancer stage IV (P = 0.005). Previous hysterectomy was a risk factor neither for AVF nor for CL. Conclusion Anastomotic-vaginal fistula forms a significant part of all symptomatic leakages after low anterior resection for cancer in women. Although diagnosed later, the need for abdominal re-operation and defunctioning stoma was not different from patients with CL. Risk factors for AVF included low anastomosis, preoperative radiotherapy and UICC cancer stage IV.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 12, no 4, 351-357 p.
Keyword [en]
Anastomotic-vaginal fistula, recto-vaginal fistula, anastomotic leakage, anterior resection of the rectum, rectal cancer, risk factors
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-54615DOI: 10.1111/j.1463-1318.2009.01798.xISI: 000275514700012OAI: diva2:305986
Available from: 2010-03-26 Created: 2010-03-26 Last updated: 2010-03-26

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Sjödahl, Rune
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Surgery Faculty of Health SciencesDepartment of Surgery in Östergötland
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