Diverticulitis Disease, Symptoms, Causes And Treatment
Diverticulitis disease is a broad name given to medical conditions that triggers the development of small bumps around the walls of the large intestine (Tursi, 2016). Diverticulitis is one of the medical conditions classified under diverticular diseases. It is a condition that occurs as a result of the rupture of one or more bumps on the intestinal wall (Klarenbeek, et al., 2011). The rupture of these bumps if not treated adequately can result in a complicated diverticulitis condition.
The disease occurs in the gastrointestinal tract of the human body. The risk of diverticulitis disease increases with age. The disease is believed to be caused by the ageing of the human muscles which make up the wall of the large intestine. The pressure in the colon pushes the internal parts of bowel out thereby causing the formation of bumps on the intestinal walls (Templeton & Strate, 2013). The pressure leads to swelling of the intestinal walls which causes diverticulitis. The swelling of the wall of the large intestine as a result of diverticulitis can spread or condense without medical treatment (Feldman, 2010). Severe cases of diverticulitis can be treated using antibiotics or through surgery.
Symptoms of Diverticulitis
The symptoms of diverticulitis can be hard to notice as some people suffering from the disease show no symptoms to the disease. Most times, the diverticulitis disease is discovered during random tests in the hospitals. Generally, the indications of the symptoms of diverticulitis can vary from one person to another (Weisberger & Jamieson, 2009). However, some of the most common symptoms of diverticulitis include
- Abdominal pain: One of the most common symptoms of diverticulitis is abdominal pain. People suffering from diverticulitis usually face severe pain on the lower abdominal wall (Tursi, 2016). The location of the pain in the abdominal wall differs from one person to another. Most people in Europe experience the abdominal pain on the left hand side of the abdomen while people from Asia generally experience abdominal pain on the right hand side of the abdomen (Klarenbeek, et al., 2011).
- Constipation: Another symptom of diverticulitis disease is scarce bowel movements in the body. People suffering from diverticulitis often experience intermittent bowel movements. It is also characterized by dry stools (Feldman, 2010).
Other symptoms include Diarrhea, Nausea, Fever and presence of blood in stool (Weisberger & Jamieson, 2009).
Causes Of Diverticulitis
The causes of diverticulitis is uncertain. However, it is believed that diverticulitis arises as a result of weakness of the colon muscles in the stomach due to ageing (Templeton & Strate, 2013). Another reason proffered to be the most probable cause of diverticulitis is the low fiber content in diet of patients (Weisberger & Jamieson, 2009). High level of consumption of red meat is also seen as a likely cause of diverticulitis.
Treatment Of Diverticulitis
The treatment of diverticulitis depends on the nature of the diverticulitis that is being suffered by the patient. Mild and severe cases of diverticulitis are treated differently (Weisberger & Jamieson, 2009). Treatments of diverticulitis includes
- Dietary changes: The treatment of mild cases of diverticulitis can be done through the use of diet. In this treatment, patients are encouraged to consume foods that has high fibre content.
- Use of antibiotics: Another treatment of mild diverticulitis is the use of antibiotics which ca be administered orally in the form of pills or through injection.
- Surgery: Surgery is used in severe cases of diverticulitis. Surgery is premeditated by complicated diverticulitis that leads to intestinal rupture. However, there are very rare cases of intestinal rupture as a result of diverticulitis.
Feldman, M., 2010. Sleisenger & Fordtran’s Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, Management. 9th ed. s.l.:MD Consult.
Klarenbeek, B. R., Korte, D., Van Der Peet, D. & Cuesta, M., 2011. Review of Current Classification for Divesticular Disease and a Translation into Clinical Procedure. International Journal of Colorectal Disease, 27(2), pp. 207-214.
Templeton, A. W. & Strate, L., 2013. Updates in Diveerticular Disease. Current Gastroenterology Reports, 15(8), p. 339.
Tursi, 2016. Diverticulosis Today: Unfashionable and still Under-researched. Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology, 9(2), pp. 213-228.
Weisberger, L. & Jamieson, B., 2009. Clinical Inquiries: How can you help prevent a Recurrence of Diverticulitis. Journal of Family Practice, 58(7), pp. 381-382.