Skip to content

Colovesical Fistula

A colovesical fistula is an open connection between the colon and the bladder. A thick wall of tissue normally separates the two. The opening allows fecal matter to pass into the bladder. This is a relatively uncommon occurrence.


More than two-thirds of colovesical fistula cases result from diverticular disease. Other causes include:

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Inflammatory bowel disease, especially Crohn’s disease
  • Surgery involving the colon or bladder
  • Cancer of surrounding organs
  • Radiation therapy


Symptoms result from the passage of fecal matter into the bladder. These include:

  • Bubbles in the urine
  • Brownish or cloudy urine
  • Blood in the urine
  • Painful or burning urination
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Sepsis and even death


CT scans can reliably diagnose colovesical fistula. Other diagnostic procedures are:

  • Cystoscopy – Inserting a camera into the bladder.
  • Barium enema – Allowing a special camera to see the soft tissue in the colon in greater detail.


A colovesical fistula is treatable with surgical removal of the fistula. The cause, severity, and location of the fistula determine the type of surgery. Since it is often located between the sigmoid colon (last section of the colon) and bladder, the surgery involves the removal of part of the sigmoid colon. Our specialists use minimally invasive surgery for more precision, faster recovery, less pain, and fewer complications. We either perform the surgery laparoscopically or use Da Vinci robotic surgery.

Find an Office

Gladstone Office

6060 North Oak Trafficway
Suite 101
Gladstone, MO 64118
Phone: (816) 941-0800

Leawood Office

4370 W 109th St.
Overland Park, KS 66211
Phone: (816) 941-0800

Overland Park Office

10100 W 87th St.
Suite 200
Overland Park, KS 66212
Phone: (816) 941-0800

Independence Office

19550 E 39th St
Suite 320
Independence, MO 64057
Phone: (816) 941-0800

Lee’s Summit

1980 SE Blue Parkway
Suite 2330
Lee’s Summit, MO 64063
Phone: (816) 941-0800