Complete closure of cancer-related anovaginal and anoperineal fistulas in locally advanced anal canal carcinomas by upfront intra-arterial chemotherapy followed by combined radiochemotherapy: report of two cases

Dis Colon Rectum. 2006 Dec;49(12):1927-30. doi: 10.1007/s10350-006-0721-0.


Purpose: Cancer-related fistulas are a major problem in locally advanced anal canal carcinoma, because conservative radiochemotherapy may not be recommended in this setting. Therefore, it is usually recommended to proceed to an abdominoperineal resection with definitive colostomy in the presence of such lesions.

Methods: Because chemotherapy can lead to closure of cancer-related fistulas and local intra-arterial chemotherapy is effective in locally advanced anal canal cancer, we treated two anal canal carcinoma patients presenting with cancer-related fistulas with upfront intra-arterial chemotherapy followed by radiochemotherapy, leading to complete closure of fistulas.

Results: Both patients are free of colostomy and in complete remission after more than four years of follow-up.

Conclusions: This conservative approach combining local intra-arterial chemotherapy and standard radiochemotherapy is feasible and should be considered in the management of such locally advanced anal canal carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Anus Neoplasms / complications
  • Anus Neoplasms / pathology
  • Anus Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Carcinoma / complications
  • Carcinoma / pathology
  • Carcinoma / therapy*
  • Chemotherapy, Adjuvant / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Injections, Intra-Arterial
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Radiotherapy, Adjuvant
  • Rectal Fistula / etiology
  • Rectal Fistula / therapy*