What is it?
An inflammation or infection of diverticula (small pouches that occur along your digestive tract mostly in colon) is called diverticulitis.
These pouches form when weak spots in the intestinal wall balloon outward. When these pouches become inflamed, or bacteria gather in them and cause an infection, you have diverticulitis.
It is very common in older adults, especially those over 60. It is believed that the root cause of the condition is fecal matter blocking the opening of diverticula, which leads to inflammation and infection. However, they think the reasons for that blockage can vary from person to person
What are the symptoms?
This condition causes symptoms similar to those of irritable bowel syndrome, such as abdominal pain and bloating. diverticulitis often causes symptoms that range from mild to severe. These symptoms can appear suddenly, or occur slowly over a few days.
Pain in the abdomen is the most common symptom. It typically occurs in the lower left side of the abdomen. The condition most often affects the part of the colon in that area. The pain in tummy usually comes and goes.
Other symptoms include
increased urge to urinate, urinating more often than usual, or burning sensation while urinating
a change in bowel habit (constipation and diarrhea)
Blood in the stool, as well as bleeding from the rectum, can occur
mucus in poo
Take lots of rest, a high fluids diet and a diet rich in fiber
- A low-fiber diet should be avoided
- Lack of physical exercise: People who exercise less than 30 minutes a day appear to have increased risk
- Smoking: Research shows that smoking increases the risk of symptomatic and complicated diverticular disease
- Certain medications: Regular use of aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may raise your risk of diverticulitis. The use of opiates and steroids appears to raise your risk of perforation, a serious complication of diverticulitis (17, 18).
- Lack of vitamin D: One study found that people with complicated diverticulitis may have lower levels of vitamin D in their system than people with uncomplicated diverticulosis.
Things to watch out for
Contact your GP as soon as possible if you have symptoms.
If you’ve already been diagnosed with diverticulitis, the symptoms can be treated at home.
But if you have any bleeding or severe pain, seek immediate medical advice. Contact your GP or, if this is not possible, call 000 or your local out-of-hours service.