2 Indications and current treatments
2.1 An enterocutaneous fistula is an abnormal opening between the small or large bowel and the skin of the abdomen, which allows the contents of the bowel to leak. A fistula can arise from any part of the bowel (duodenum, jejunum, ileum, colon or rectum). The most common predisposing conditions are inflammatory bowel disease and a history of bowel surgery or trauma.
2.2 Management options include total parenteral nutrition and measures to prevent intestinal contents from passing through the bowel, so decreasing fistula output and encouraging healing. Surgical options include primary repair with resection of the fistula track, with or without bowel diversion (creating a stoma).