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PURPOSE: The purpose of the study was to review a rare anomaly of anorectal malformations in girls, congenital anovestibular fistula (AVF) with normal anus, over a 12-year period. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 24 female patients of AVF with normal anus were treated in the Department of Pediatric Surgery, Chittagong Medical College and Hospital, Chittagong, Bangladesh, from January 1994 to June 2006. Clinical features, operative findings, operative procedures, postoperative complications, and outcomes were analyzed. RESULTS: Age ranged from 1 day to 7 years (mean, 10.5 months). All 24 female patients presented with passage of stools through 2 perineal openings. In addition, vulvar abscesses were noted in 5 cases. Vestibular opening of the fistula was found behind the vagina in 18 patients, and the anal opening of the fistula was on the anterior anal wall above the dentate line in 20 cases. There were no associated abnormalities. After adequate bowel preparation, 22 patients underwent excision of the fistulous tract with reconstruction of anal wall without a diverting colostomy. All 5 patients with vulvar abscess experienced wound disruption and required reoperation. All 24 girls have normal bowel motions at follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: In the management of AVF with normal anus, primary repair without colostomy is a safe option. In cases of abscess or infection, definitive operation should be deferred until adequate healing is achieved.

Original publication




Journal article


J Pediatr Surg

Publication Date





526 - 529


Age Distribution, Anal Canal, Bangladesh, Child, Child, Preschool, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Incidence, Infant, Infant, Newborn, Reconstructive Surgical Procedures, Rectovaginal Fistula, Retrospective Studies, Risk Assessment, Treatment Outcome