Diverticulosis / Diverticulitis

Diverticular Disease Treatment in Chicago

Diverticulosis vs. Diverticulitis Disease

Diverticulosis is an extremely common disease. Most patients are not aware that they have it because it rarely causes symptoms and is often diagnosed during a routine colonoscopy. The disease occurs in the colon, or large intestine, and consists of areas of weakness in the intestine wall. These areas eventually form bulges called diverticula that can trap small amounts of stool.

We are often asked if diverticulosis surgery is necessary. Diverticulosis does not require medical intervention. It may be caused by insufficient fiber in one’s diet which causes constipation and puts pressure on the colon. This pressure can result in the formation of diverticula. Increasing the amount of dietary fiber or taking a fiber supplement may be recommended.

Diverticulitis occurs when the bulges in the colon rupture due to inflammation or infection. Symptoms of diverticulitis typically include abdominal pain (mainly in the left lower side), fever, nausea and constipation. In very rare cases, the pain is severe enough to cause people to rush to the emergency room.

Diverticulitis Treatment and Surgery

Diverticulitis is usually treated with bowel rest and antibiotics. Some people may require hospitalization to receive antibiotics through an IV. If the diverticulitis symptoms occur often enough or are severe enough, colorectal surgery for diverticulitis may be needed. During this procedure, the surgeon removes the infected portion of the colon.

Choose the Chicago Institute of Advanced Surgery

At the Chicago Institute of Advanced Surgery, doctors who treat diverticulitis perform minimally invasive surgery to remove the affected portion of the colon. Patients are able to resume a normal diet and lifestyle shortly after the operation. We understand that many patients undergoing diverticulitis surgery are concerned about needing a colostomy; however, rest assured that this extreme result is NOT necessary in almost all cases of diverticulitis surgery.

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