Experience of a specialist centre in the management of anastomotic sinus following leaks after low rectal or ileal pouch-anal anastomosis with diverting stoma

C. Zhuo, K. Trencheva, L. Maggiori, J. W. Milsom, T. Sonoda, P. J. Shukla, M. Vitellaro, T. Makino, S. W. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Aim: The natural history and appropriate management of anastomotic sinus has not been clearly defined. The aim of this study was to evaluate the incidence, management and outcomes of anastomotic sinus. Method: The medical records of all patients who underwent a low anterior resection (LAR) or an ileal pouch-anal anastomosis (IPAA) with a diverting loop ileostomy (LI) and with contrast enema performed before planned stoma closure between 2001 and 2011 were retrospectively reviewed. The radiological features of the sinus tract, treatment and outcome of anastomotic sinus were studied. Results: Twenty patients (8.2%) were found to have anastomotic sinuses out of the total of 244 patients who had undergone LAR (n = 146) or IPAA (n = 98) with LI. Of these, 13 (65%) had prior symptomatic leaks, while seven did not. Twelve patients (60%) were found to have simple sinus tracts, while eight had complex sinuses (associated with either pelvic cavities or severe strictures). Five patients with simple tracts were treated with observation alone. Fifteen patients underwent surgical interventions. Overall, with a median follow-up of 28 (6-73) months, 16 patients (80%) had resolution of their sinuses. All of 12 patients (100%) with simple sinus tracts and four of eight patients (50%) with complex sinuses underwent successful stoma reversals after 8 (3.5-24) months following the initial surgery (P = 0.01). Conclusion: Patients with simple tracts are significantly more likely to have complete resolution of sinuses than patients with complex sinuses. Persistent sinus associated with either a pelvic cavity or severe stricture despite surgical intervention is likely to lead to a permanent stoma. Colorectal Disease

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1429-1435
Number of pages7
JournalColorectal Disease
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013



  • Anastomotic sinus
  • Contrast enema study
  • Ileal pouch-anal anastomosis
  • Ileostomy
  • Leak
  • Low rectal anastomosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

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