Regenerative and Endoscopic Treatment of Complex Recurrent Fistula in Ano: When Technology Supports Clinical Treatment

Regenerative and Endoscopic Treatment of Complex Recurrent Fistula in Ano: When Technology Supports Clinical Treatment

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Corresponding Author
Marco De Monti
EOC - Beata Vergine Regional Hospital, Department of Surgery, Mendrisio, Switzerland


Background: Recurrent anal fistulas present a challenge to surgeons due to the high risk of post-operative incontinence caused by repeated surgery. The correct identification of the anatomy of the main and secondary fistula tracts and the individuation of abscess cavities are fundamental for correct treatment. Intraoperative endoscopic evaluation and the complete destruction of the fistula pathway can be achieved through video-assisted anal fistula treatment (VAAFT). Furthermore, the injection of human autologous Microfractured Adipose Tissue (MFAT) processed by a Lipogems® device can be used as both a bulking agent and a regenerative technique. Methods: A combined approach of VAAFT plus Microfractured Adipose Tissue Graft (MFAT) is proposed in order to treat recurrent and complex fistula in ano. Results: Three cases treated with a combination of VAAFT and MFAT grafts are described. All cases had undergone multiple interventions at the perianal level over a period ranging from 1 to 15 years. One case certainly failed due to poor patient compliance, but in the remaining two cases, the patients made a complete recovery with the disappearance of symptoms over a follow-up period of one to two years. Conclusion: The combination of video-assisted anal fistula treatment and injection of human autologous microfractured adipose tissue may be a valid, safe and feasible therapeutic option. MFAT injections are more effective in promoting tissue regeneration than simply “filling” the fistula tract and are common practice also in the treatment of Crohn’s Disease due to the immunomodulatory power of mesenchymal cells.

Article Info

Article Type
Research Article
Publication history
Received: Tue 06, Sep 2022
Accepted: Tue 20, Sep 2022
Published: Fri 07, Oct 2022
© 2023 Marco De Monti. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Hosting by Science Repository.
DOI: 10.31487/j.RGM.2022.02.03