Diverticula are pouches that form in the wall of the colon. When these pouches become inflamed or infected, they can cause a painful condition called diverticulitis.
“We do not know exactly why diverticula form,” says Wilson P. Pais, MD, MBA, FACP, FRCP, gastroenterologist, Saint Francis Medical Partner. “We believe they are more likely to form when you do not have enough fiber in your diet. A diet high in fiber produces stool that is bulky enough to pass through the intestine. Without fiber, the colon has to strain, causing pressure on weak spots in the colon which can lead to diverticula.”
In some cases, diverticulitis is brief and can be treated with a round of antibiotics. But if the pain is severe, you may need to be admitted to Saint Francis, where you will be fed intravenously to allow your bowel to rest.
To make an appointment with Pais, call 573-331-3000.