When Do I Need a Diverticulitis Surgery?

Q:
When do I need a diverticulitis surgery?

A:
Surgery for diverticulitis involves removing the diseased part of the colon. You may decide to have surgery for diverticulitis if you have:

  • A high risk of repeated attacks (such as in people younger than age 40, or people with an impaired immune system).
  • An abnormal opening (fistula) that has formed between the colon and an adjacent organ, most commonly the bladder, uterus, or vagina.
  • Repeated attacks of diverticulitis. Surgery to remove the diseased part of the colon often is recommended if you have two or more severe attacks.

Surgery for diverticulitis, in which the infected part of the colon is removed, may be required if you have complications, including:

  • An infected pouch (diverticulum ) that has ruptured into the abdominal cavity, especially if a pocket of infection (abscess) has formed.
  • An infection that has spread into the abdominal cavity (peritonitis).
  • A blocked colon (bowel obstruction) or a narrow spot in the colon (stricture).
  • Infection that has spread through the blood to other parts of the body (sepsis).
  • Repeated problems with bleeding or severe bleeding that does not stop with other treatments.

People who have mild, brief attacks and who are willing to try long-term dietary changes may be able to avoid surgery.However, if you have multiple attacks of diverticulitis, surgery may be appropriate.

Keyword: diverticulitis surgery; surgery diverticulitis

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