fistula problem....should i go to er?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 144
   Posted 11/11/2007 10:50 AM (GMT -7)   
okay, i posted earlier but no anwser's yet.  I've have a seton in for an anal fistula since may.  Friday i started having a decent amount of blood coming out of it, that has never happened before.  I also had a low grade fever that morning but later it went away.  Also, stabbing pains and itching and burning down there.  Saturday night my friend took a look down there for me and said that it's all red and irritated and the opening of the fistula was swollen, also there is a rancid smelling discharge coming out.  I've always had the discharge but the smell wasn't that bad before.  I called the doc on friday but they can't get me in until thursday.  i'm not sure what to do since i don't know if this is normal or not.  I really don't want to go to the er since no one there really knows what to do with a fistula or how to treat it.  (past experience)  I suppose i could wait until thursday but i'm worried that there may be something wrong and i don't want to wait to long to have it treated and have extra complications.  Then again sit in the er for hours for them to send me home and tell me they don't know what's wrong.  There has not been any blood come out since friday morning.  So what to do??  wait or go in?  or does anyone know if this is normal.  
26 years old
dx with crohn's at 23
Fistula seton surgery 2006
Advancment Rectal Flap surgery 2007
Fisula seton surgery 2007

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 1986
   Posted 11/11/2007 11:07 AM (GMT -7)   
You need to see a doctor and probably get on antibiotics. I understand that you don't want to go to the ER, but if your doctor isn't available until Thursday, you need to see someone. When you called your GI did you tell them you think you have an infection? That's what it sounds like. Maybe call them back tomorrow morning and tell them that and if that doesn't work ask them to call ahead to the ER or urgent care because you have to see someone. At my hospital there's usually a resident GI or internist on call, if they don't know what to do, they contact my doctor.

I'm not sure what kind of complications something like this could cause, but I know I'd be nervous and want someone to look at it sooner rather than later.

49 years old, Crohn's Disease   
Six resection surgeries, permanent ostomy, adverse reactions to Remicadeback on 6MP for maintenance, hoping for a long remission from this last surgery. 

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 11/11/2007 11:49 AM (GMT -7)   
absolutely see your doctor as soon as you can. even if its just your GP to get some antibiotics until you see your GI
the good part (as good as it can get) is that you do have a seton in so you know that nothing is building up to cause an abscess. as long as its all coming out its better than having it collect.
i've had alot of experience with peri-anal fistulas and abscesses and i always feel better knowing that the drain is there so nothing can build up. kinda gives me piece of mind.
take lots of baths or sitz baths, and try to keep it as clean as possible.
i know how annoying going to the ER is, especially on the weekend, but if anything they can determine if its an infection and get you on flagyl, or cipro, or whatever you've taken in the past.
good luck!!!!!

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 11/11/2007 3:15 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't know anything about them but just wanted to add to what the others said... call your doc again. Tell them it looks infected, is urgent, and you need to get in on an emergency basis. If they say that is not possible ask to have the doctor call you. Then describe it to the doc. If they arent helpful tell them you will be heading to the ER.
26 Year old married female.  Diagnosed w/ CD 3 years ago, IBS for over 10 years before that, which was probably the CD.  Currently on Pentasa 4 pills/4x day, hysociamine prn, nexium, and ortho evra.  Good times!!!

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