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Enterocutaneous Fistula

An enterocutaneous fistula (ECF) is an abnormal connection that develops between the intestinal tract or stomach and the skin. As a result, contents of the stomach or intestines leak through to the skin.

Most ECFs occur after bowel surgery. Other causes include infection, perforated peptic ulcer and inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. An ECF may also develop from an abdominal injury or trauma, such as a stabbing or gunshot.

Our Approach to Enterocutaneous Fistula

UCSF offers state-of-the-art surgical repair and rehabilitation for patients with the most complicated abdominal conditions, including enterocutaneous fistulas. Depending on the patient's needs, the treatment team may include gastrointestinal surgeons, nutritionists, critical care specialists, plastic surgeons and infectious disease specialists, as well as nurses specializing in this disorder. Our experts work together to devise a treatment plan for each patient.

Awards & recognition

  • usnews-neurology

    Among the top hospitals in the nation

  • One of the nation's best in gastroenterology & GI surgery

UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.