A fistula is an unusual opening that forms between two hollow spaces in the body. A bladder fistula occurs when an opening forms between the bladder and another organ or the skin. The most common types of bladder fistulas occur between the bladder and the bowel, or between the bladder and the vagina.
There are a wide range of factors or conditions that can cause a bladder fistula, including:
- Bladder has been blocked for a period of time and becomes damaged
- Bowel cancer
- Gynecologic cancer
- Having undergone radiation therapy
- Inflammatory diseases, such as Crohn’s disease or diverticulitis
- Prior surgery on the bowel or bladder
Signs and symptoms of a bladder fistula may include:
- Gas coming out of your urethra (tube that drains urine from the bladder to outside the body) as you urinate
- Persistent, recurrent (chronic) urinary tract infections (UTIs)
- Urine that looks like stool
- Urine that smells like stool
The urologic experts at the University of Miami Health System are here to help you get relief from the symptoms of bladder fistula.
Your urologist will likely recommend you undergo a surgical procedure to remove the damaged part of the bladder.
Your urologist will perform a comprehensive physical exam – including gathering a medical history – in order to diagnose a bladder fistula.
Your doctor may order imaging tests – such as an X-ray or computerized tomography (CT) scan – to get a better look at your bladder and surrounding structures.
Why Choose UHealth?
Innovative, expert urology care. Our team of urology experts delivers advanced care for all urologic conditions. We use the latest research and the least invasive procedures to help you feel better and recover more quickly. Our experienced urologists design a personalized treatment plan to give you the best possible results.
Leaders in robotic surgery treatment. We have some of the world’s most experienced robotic surgeons for urologic procedures. In fact, doctors come from all over the world to learn at our Urology Robotic Program — the #1 ranked program in South Florida. The University of Miami Health System was the first academic medical center in the world to get the da Vinci Xi robotic surgery system and has completed more than 5,000 robotic surgeries — procedures that offer less pain and scarring and a faster recovery.
Multidisciplinary approach to care. Your team works closely with doctors in radiology, pathology, medical oncology, and other specialties for prompt, accurate diagnosis and comprehensive treatment. You have a team of experts on your side.
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