Diverticulitis

Progressive Surgical Care

Colorectal Surgeons and General Surgeons located in Howard Beach, Queens & New Hyde Park, Long Island

Diverticulitis is a common condition of the colon that can be painful and could require surgery to prevent long-term complications. The providers at Progressive Surgical Care, with New York offices in New Hyde Park, Long Island and Howard Beach, Queens, are experts at the medical and surgical treatment of your diverticulitis. For an expert consultation regarding your diverticulitis symptoms, call to schedule an appointment.

Diverticulitis Q & A

What’s diverticulitis?

Diverticulitis is a condition of the colon or large intestine, where infection forms in small pockets along the intestinal wall. These small pockets, called diverticula, trap food and bacteria causing infection, inflammation, swelling, and a potential rupture into the abdominal cavity.

Diverticulitis usually affects the large intestine — the colon. In most cases, diverticulitis does not cause significant complications, but for some, it could cause:

  • Bowel obstructions
  • Chronic constipation
  • Abscesses or fistulas of the intestinal wall
  • Intestinal rupture
  • Peritonitis, an infection of the abdominal cavity
  • Stricture

Surgery might be necessary if you have severe diverticulitis that does not respond to other treatments or develop a complication of diverticulitis such as abscess, fistula or stricture.

What are the symptoms of diverticulitis?

Diverticula alone do not usually cause symptoms and are present in the majority of Americans over the age of 60. However, diverticulitis (inflammation of the diverticula) can cause symptoms like:

  • Abdominal pain and tenderness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Frequent urination

If you have these symptoms, it’s important to have an evaluation and get quality efficient treatment to prevent long-term complications that may require surgery and a difficult recovery.

Who’s at risk of diverticulitis?

Some risk factors place you at higher risk of having diverticulitis or of having complications of diverticulitis. These include:

  • Being over age 50
  • Being obese
  • Smoking
  • Living a sedentary lifestyle
  • Eating a diet low in fiber
  • Family history of diverticular disease
  • Young obese men

Long-term use of some medications can also increase your risk of diverticulitis, including steroids, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and opioids.

How’s diverticulitis treated?

Initially, your diverticulitis is treated with antibiotics, bowel rest, and a clear liquid diet. If your diverticulitis keeps coming back or causes severe complications, surgery might be necessary.

Progressive Surgical Care offers both open and minimally invasive surgery to remove infected areas of the intestine and repair any damage done by diverticulitis.

Surgeries include:

  • Laparoscopic: performed through small holes in the abdomen
  • Da Vinci® robotic-assisted: performed using highly precise instruments through small incisions or the belly button
  • Open surgery: performed using an incision, when minimally invasive approaches aren’t an option

The team of surgeons at Progression Surgical Care offers up-to-date methods for treating your diverticulitis and any complications resulting from your disease.

For a consultation regarding surgical treatment of your diverticulitis, call or schedule an appointment today with Progressive Surgical Care.