Crohn's Disease Forum » Surgery » Fistulas, Fissures and Abscesses » New and Confused... about Setons

01-22-2018, 11:13 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2018

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New and Confused... about Setons

Hi guys...

I am new here and unfortunately was recently told by my colorectal surgeon that I have a complicated (high) fistula and need to have a seton put in. And this will be taking place in a couple of days I was told I don't have Crohns and that I am just "unlucky". My fistula doesn't really cause any pain or symptoms, except when it starts to abscess, and then it is really painful. I'm worried that having this seton surgery will make my symptoms worse. I don't know how long the seton will be in place and what can be done to heal my fistula. I am quite concerned about incontinence as well.. I am just nervous, scared, and confused about this whole thing. I'm just looking for some support and would love to hear from anyone who is experiencing this as well.

01-24-2018, 07:35 AM   #2
Fistulathens's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2017

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Hi thispenguin, and welcome.
I've been where you are (and still am unfortunately) but it does get better over time (only if you seek treatment though).
I have personal experience since I had a draining seton for three months last year. It helps drain the fistula and prevent abscesses from ocurring. It also helps to better define the fistula track as well as lower the fistula, thus making various surgeries in the future easier.

There is zero incontinence risk with a draining seton and it is not really the bad. You might hurt a little bit during the first week or so, but then it will get better.

High-fistulas are curable but take a longer time to heal since you have to go through the draining seton and then a surgery (Flap, Lift, FiLac VAAFT, etc. which do not have 100% success) so you may need more surgeries.

I personally had a draining seton in July 2017, FiLac surgery in October 2017. Now I am giving it another shot with FiLac in mid-February, since my first FiLac surgery helped my fistula to become lower and have less drainage. If it fails again I will go with either Lift or FLAP or Cutting Seton or Fistulotomy (if possible).
Try to be as patient as you can, this thing taught me to take every day as it comes. All the best and keep your spirits up! Try to forget it as much as you can and sooner or later (with the help of a good CRS) you 'll get over it.

Last edited by Fistulathens; 01-24-2018 at 07:53 AM.

Crohn's Disease Forum » Surgery » Fistulas, Fissures and Abscesses » New and Confused... about Setons
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