What are the treatment options for diverticular disease?

Treatment for diverticular disease depends on one’s symptoms and their severity. People with diverticulosis may be asymptomatic and only have symptoms if they have an acute attack of diverticulitis. Sometimes diverticulitis may require hospitalization. 
Potential treatments for diverticular disease include:
  • Antibiotics may be prescribed to treat infection during diverticulitis. People may need to be hospitalized and receive IV antibiotics during more severe and/or complicated flare ups of diverticulitis.
  • Liquid diet that typically lasts a few days during a flare up of diverticulitis while the bowel heals. Solid food is then gradually added back into one’s diet. 
  • Over the counter pain relievers to help with the pain experienced during diverticulitis 
  • Tube insertion to drain an abscess may be necessary if one forms during a more complicated and severe episode of diverticulitis. 
  • Surgery may be necessary in more complicated and severe cases to fix any perforations, abscesses, fistulas, or bowel obstructions. Surgery may also be indicated if one has multiple episodes of uncomplicated diverticulitis or if they have a compromised immune system. The two main surgeries that may need to be performed are:
  • Primary bowel resection to take out diseased segments of the intestine and connect the healthy segments together. 
  • Bowel resection with colostomy may be needed when there is so much inflammation that parts of the colon cannot be reconnected after resection. In these cases, a healthy part of the colon is connected to an opening (stoma) in the abdominal wall. This is called a colostomy. Waste passes through the stoma into a colostomy bag outside of the body. It is possible for the colostomy to be reversed once inflammation subsides. 
diverticular disease treatment

  • "Diverticulitis." Mayo Clinic. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 07 Aug. 2014. Web. 21 Sep. 2017.
  • “Diverticular Disease.” American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons. ASCRS, n.d. Web. 21 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Diverticulosis and Diverticulitis.” American College of Gastroenterology, Sep. 2008. Web. 21 Sep. 2017. 
  • “Diverticular Disease.” American Academy of Family Physicians. familydoctor.org, Jun. 2017. Web. 21 Sep. 2017. 



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