The importance of enterocutaneous fistulas imaging

The authors of this paper aim to increase the familiarity of the radiologist with the imaging of enterocutaneous fistulas (ECF) in order to make appropriate choices regarding treatment and increase the likelihood of therapeutic success.




Teaching points:

  • Enterocutaneous fistulas may complicate abdominal surgery, sometimes Crohn’s disease and tumours.
  • The high associated morbidity and mortality result from sepsis, malnutrition and metabolic imbalance.
  • The multidisciplinary management of ECFs requires thorough imaging for correct therapeutic choice.
  • Radiographic fistulography rapidly depicts fistulas and communicating bowel loops in real-time.
  • Multidetector CT and MRI provide cross-sectional information on fistulas and underlying diseases.

Article: Enterocutaneous fistulas: a primer for radiologists with emphasis on CT and MRI

Authors: Massimo Tonolini and Paolo Magistrelli