Diagnosis and management of acute diverticulitis.

Georgia Regents University, Augusta, GA, USA.
American family physician (Impact Factor: 1.82). 05/2013; 87(9):612-20.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Uncomplicated diverticulitis is localized diverticular inflammation, whereas complicated diverticulitis is diverticular inflammation associated with an abscess, phlegmon, fistula, obstruction, bleeding, or perforation. Patients with acute diverticulitis may present with left lower quadrant pain, tenderness, abdominal distention, and fever. Other symptoms may include anorexia, constipation, nausea, diarrhea, and dysuria. Initial laboratory studies include a complete blood count, basic metabolic panel, urinalysis, and measurement of C-reactive protein. Computed tomography, the most commonly performed imaging test, is useful to establish the diagnosis and the extent and severity of disease, and to exclude complications in selected patients. Colonoscopy is recommended four to six weeks after resolution of symptoms for patients with complicated disease or for another indication, such as age-appropriate screening. In mild, uncomplicated diverticulitis, antibiotics do not accelerate recovery, or prevent complications or recurrences. Hospitalization should be considered if patients have signs of peritonitis or there is suspicion of complicated diverticulitis. Inpatient management includes intravenous fluid resuscitation and intravenous antibiotics. Patients with a localized abscess may be candidates for computed tomography-guided percutaneous drainage. Fifteen to 30 percent of patients admitted with acute diverticulitis require surgical intervention during that admission. Laparoscopic surgery results in a shorter length of stay, fewer complications, and lower in-hospital mortality compared with open colectomy. The decision to proceed to surgery in patients with recurrent diverticulitis should be individualized and based on patient preference, comorbidities, and lifestyle. Interventions to prevent recurrences of diverticulitis include increased intake of dietary fiber, exercise, cessation of smoking, and, in persons with a body mass index of 30 kg per m2 or higher, weight loss.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Diverticular disease is one of the most prevalent gastrointestinal conditions to afflict Western populations. Although the majority of patients with diverticulosis remain asymptomatic, about one third will develop symptoms at some point in their lives. Symptomatic diverticular disease can range from chronic mild gastrointestinal distress to acute bouts of diverticulitis complicated by abscess or frank colonic perforation. The mainstay of treatment of symptomatic diverticular disease has long been bowel rest, antibiotics, and pain control, reserving surgery for those with complicated disease. This review discusses the epidemiology, pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and management of the spectrum of diverticular disease, including recent advances in the treatment of chronic diverticular disease.
    Current Gastroenterology Reports 10/2010; 12(5):399-407. DOI:10.1007/s11894-010-0126-z
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Acute diverticulitis, defined as acute inflammation associated with a colonic diverticulum, is a common emergency presentation managed by both surgeons and physicians. There have been advances in both the medical and the surgical treatments offered to patients in recent years. To review the current understanding of the aetiology and treatment of acute diverticulitis. A search of PubMed and Medline databases was performed to identify articles relevant to the aetiology, pathogenesis and management of acute diverticulitis. There are 75 hospital admissions per year for acute diverticulitis per 100 000 of the population in the United States. Recent reports suggest a 26% increase in admissions over a 7-year period. Factors predisposing to the development of acute diverticulitis include obesity, smoking, diet, lack of physical activity and medication use such as aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. The condition is associated with a low mortality of about 1% following medical therapy, rising to 4% in-hospital mortality in those requiring surgery. There is limited evidence on the efficacy of individual antibiotic regimens, and antibiotic treatment may not be required in all patients. The rates of recurrence reported for patients with acute diverticulitis following medical management vary from 13% to 36%. The surgical management of those patients who fail medical treatment has moved towards a laparoscopic nonresectional approach; however, the evidence supporting this is limited. Further high-quality randomised controlled trials are required of both medical and surgical treatments in patients with acute diverticulitis, if management is to be evidence-based.
    Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics 01/2014; 39(4). DOI:10.1111/apt.12596 · 4.55 Impact Factor
  • Journal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition 03/2009; 48(2):233-6. DOI:10.1097/MPG.0b013e31815c3b1b · 2.87 Impact Factor