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18.12.2017 | Original Article | Ausgabe 1/2018

Techniques in Coloproctology 1/2018

Early outcomes of fluorescence angiography in the setting of endorectal mucosa advancement flaps

Techniques in Coloproctology > Ausgabe 1/2018
J. S. Turner, A. Okonkwo, A. Chase, C. E. Clark
Wichtige Hinweise
This work was presented at the 12th Annual Academic Surgical Congress, Las Vegas, 2017.



Fistula-in-ano has a reported incidence of 31–34%. Besides fistulotomy, options for fistula repair are seton placement, endorectal advancement flap (ERAF), fibrin sealant, anal fistula plug and ligation of the intersphincteric fistula tract. Despite having a reported success rate as high as 75–98%, ERAF is not without complications, including flap breakdown, recurrence and fecal incontinence. Traditionally, maintaining a broad base to preserve blood supply has been advocated to reduce flap failure. And the aim of the present study was to evaluate outcomes of adult patients who underwent ERAF for complex fistula-in-ano with the use of intraoperative fluorescence angiography (FA) at our institution between July 2014 and July 2016.


We retrospectively reviewed consecutive cases of complex fistula-in-ano repair with ERAF and FA from a prospectively maintained dataset of adult patients with complex fistula-in-ano. Demographics, intraoperative data and 60-day outcomes were recorded and reviewed.


Six patients [five males and one female with a mean age of 40 years (range 25–46 years)], with a total of seven fistulas, were identified. Six (85.7%) of these patients had undergone prior surgery for fistula-in-ano. No recurrences or complications of any type were noted at 2-week and 8-week follow-up. The majority of patients (71.4%) required flap revision based on intraoperative FA prior to flap fixation.


FA is safe and offers real-time assessment of flap perfusion prior to and after fixation in anal fistula repair. The rate of flap ischemia may be underestimated, and therefore, to improve outcomes in ERAF, intraoperative FA should be included in the surgical armamentarium.

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