Are you suffering from diverticulitis?
Diverticulitis is when pouches called diverticula that are found along the intestine walls are inflamed or infected. Dr. Krishnamurthy Shivshanker of Houston Digestive Diseases Consultants in Houston, TX, can help diagnose and treat this issue.
More About Diverticulitis
The formation of these pouches is a condition called diverticulosis but diverticulitis is an advanced stage of diverticulosis. Several small abscess form in the pouches which may result in infection, or perforate the bowel.
In actuality, the pouches develop in several places, not just the intestines. They can be found on the digestive tract but are most commonly found on the left side of the abdomen.
Symptoms of Diverticulitis
- Severe abdominal pain and cramping on the left side of the abdomen
- Sensitivity to touch
- Chills or fever
- Bowel obstruction resulting in constipation
- Thin stools
- Rectal bleeding, which is rare
Severe symptoms that require doctor notification include:
- Rigid abdomen and pain when you move
- Peritonitis, infection of abdominal cavity membrane
- Abdominal swelling
- Blood in your stool
If left untreated, complications may arise and you may need surgery:
- Abscesses formation near the infected diverticula.
- Fistulas develop if an infected diverticulum reaches an organ, such as the large intestine, bladder, kidneys
- Severe bleeding may result in needing a blood transfusion.
- Scarring resulting in blockage of the intestine.
Your Houston gastroenterologist performs several tests that help indicate where exactly the abscessed pouches are located and the severity of the condition.
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- CT scan: A CT scan is a series of X-ray images taken from different angles to evaluate your intestines and the surrounding tissue.
- Colonoscopy: This procedure enables your doctor to examine the lining of your large intestine, colon, by inserting a thin, flexible tube into your anus to monitor your intestine for any abnormalities.
Need a Consultation?
For more information about diverticulitis, contact your Houston, TX, gastroenterologist by calling (713) 777-2555 today!