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Colonic Diverticula

Colonic diverticula are small "sacs" that protrude through the wall of the large intestine. Its frequency increases gradually with age. For example, they are present in about 20% of the 40-year-old population and gradually increase, being present in 60% of the 60-year-old population.


The presence of diverticula depends on many factors, such as age, a diet low in fiber, high in fat and red meat, sedentary lifestyle, obesity, and smoking, among others.


They generally do not cause discomfort; however, in a percentage of patients they may become microperforated and inflamed, causing a pattern of diverticulitis with different degrees of severity and potential complications, or there may be bleeding related to the diverticula that may compromise the stability of the patient.



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It occurs in 4 to 15% of patients with diverticula in the colon and is due to a perforation of the diverticulum. The patient may present abdominal pain, generally on the left side, fever, and an alteration in their bowel habits. It can be uncomplicated and can be managed with intestinal rest, antibiotics, and analgesics; or it can be an inflammatory process complicated by the formation of an abscess, a fistula (a communication between the colon and some other organ such as the bladder or the skin), an intestinal occlusion or a frank perforation with the exit of stool into the abdomen.

Diagnosis is made with a careful physical examination and, if necessary, office studies such as an abdominal tomography. Treatment will depend on the clinical picture of the patient, the severity of the inflammatory process and its complications and ranges from medical management at home to emergency surgery.

It is important that a trained physician promptly assess the patient to make the diagnosis and implement the necessary measures to control the inflammatory condition.




It occurs in 5 to 15% of patients with diverticula in the colon and is caused by injury to the blood vessel related to the diverticulum. It is characterized by bleeding through the rectum, usually without abdominal pain or with minimal abdominal pain. It can be a bleeding so important that it compromises the stability of the patient, so it has to be attended immediately by the doctor for its stabilization, diagnostic definition and timely management.

In case you have discomfort suggestive of a disease related to colonic diverticula, do not hesitate to go to an expert and trained doctor for its review, timely diagnosis and treatment.

Médico y paciente

See your certified colorectal surgeon for an expert assessment and answer all your questions about this condition


Dr. Edgar A. González Macedo

General Surgery - Laparoscopic Surgery - Colon and Rectal Surgery

Tel: 5272 3327 Ext. 2 WhatsApp and Mobile: 55 20 85 83 70

Puede seleccionar la Dirección del Consultorio que más le beneficie.

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