Spontaneous cholecystocutaneous fistula

HPB (Oxford). 2001;3(4):279-80. doi: 10.1080/136518201753335584.


Background: An external biliary fistula is a rare complication of gallstone disease. We present a case of cholecystocutaneous fistula successfully treated with excision and cholecystectomy.

Case outline: A 67-year-old man presented with a persisting discharge from what was thought to be an'abscess' in the right hypochondrium, which had previously been incised and drained.

Results: Investigation with computed tomography, ultrasound scanning and sinography demonstrated a cholecystocutaneous fistula and calculous cholecystitis. The fistulous track was excised together with the gallbladder.

Discussion: This condition is rarely seen nowadays due to the greater availability of antibiotic therapy and biliary surgery. Cholecystectomy is the preferred treatment, although in a few patients, the fistula may close spontaneously.