Dr. Trishanna Sookdeo
Diverticular disease describes the formation of small pouches in the large intestinal wall called diverticula. These pouches forms as you become older and many do not know that they have it. Some may experience constipation and bloating.
Diverticular can also bleed resulting in bright red rectal bleeding or sticky black stools. This occurs when blood vessels around the pouches rupture and bleed.
When these pouches are inflamed or infected, patients develop left sided, lower abdominal pain, fever, chills, nausea, constipation or diarrhea. This is then referred to as diverticulitis.
Several types of studies can detect diverticular disease. These include a CT Scan of the abdomen, direct viewing with colonoscopy/sigmoidoscopy or through the use of x-rays and an oral dye called a barium enema
Many believe that constipation plays a role in the development of diverticular disease and so the best way to prevent diverticular disease is with a diet rich in fiber, good hydration and exercise.
If you suspect diverticular disease , it is worth talking to your doctor about ways to manage and prevent diverticulitis.