Diverticulitis, more specifically colonic diverticulitis, is a digestive condition marked by inflammation of irregular pouches called diverticula that may form in the wall of the large intestine.
The symptoms of diverticulitis are as follows:
- Pain, usually in the lower left side of the abdomen.
- Vomiting and nausea
- Tenderness in the abdomen
- Diarrhea or, less frequently, constipation
Causes & Risk Factors of Diverticulitis
Pressure applied to brittle sections of your colon frequently causes diverticula to appear. As a result, marble-sized pockets protrude through the colon wall. Diverticulitis develops when the diverticula ripen, causing swelling and, occasionally, infection.
There are several factors that may result in developing diverticulitis, like:
- Lack of exercise
- High animal fat and low-fiber diet
Certain medicines: Steroids, opioids, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are some drugs that can cause diverticulitis.
Complications from acute diverticulitis can include any of the following for about 25% of patients:
- Pus accumulating in the pouch leads to an abscess.
- An intestinal obstruction brought on by scarring.
- A pathological opening (fistula) between intestinal segments or the colon and other organs.
- If the infected or inflammatory pouch ruptures and spills intestinal contents into your abdominal cavity, peritonitis may result. A medical emergency such as peritonitis requires immediate attention.
We recommend the following,
- Regular exercise: Exercise encourages regular bowel movements and lowers colon pressure. On most days, try to get in at least 30 minutes of exercise.
- Eating a diet high in fiber reduces the risk of diverticulitis. Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and other fiber-rich diets help soften waste and speed up colon transit. Nuts and seeds don’t increase your risk of getting diverticulitis.
- Drink a lot of water: Fiber works by absorbing water and causing your colon to produce more soft, bulky waste.
- Avoid Smoking: There is a link between smoking and an increased risk of diverticulitis.
Diagnosis, Treatment & Follow-up
A CT scan is the best test to diagnose the condition. You should not have a colonoscopy when you are in pain, as this carries a risk of rupturing the diverticula. Frequently, patients with diverticulitis need hospital admission. Mostly, they can be managed by medicines- IV antibiotics, painkillers, etc. Sometimes, the infection may have spread beyond the colon and lead to a pocket of pus. This may require drainage which can be done by a radiologist. This avoids formal surgery.
If the infection spreads to the other part of the abdomen, this can be life-threatening, and an operation should be done.This would mean cutting out the infected part of the colon. This can be done by open or laparoscopic method. We prefer the Laparoscopic technique to reduce pain and wound infection rates. It is possible that the surgeon may have to make an artificial anus in the abdominal wall for stool to come out in a bag. This is temporary and is closed generally within 3-6 months.
Where to find the best Diverticulitis treatment in Kolkata?
The best treatment we can find in Kolkata for diverticulitis is at Digestives Surgery Clinic (https://www.digestivesurgeryclinic.com/), which is a center of dedicated doctors, who are passionate about the field of gastrointestinal surgery.
Read more blogs at https://www.digestivesurgeryclinic.com/blog/