In diverticulosis and diverticulitis, pouches called diverticula form in the wall of the large intestine, or colon.
Doctors aren't sure what causes these pouches in the colon. But they think that a low-fibre diet may play a role. Without fibre to add bulk to the stool, the colon has to work harder than normal to push the stool forward. The pressure from this may cause pouches to form in weak spots along the colon.
Some people with diverticulosis get diverticulitis. But experts don't know why this happens.
You may be able to lower your chance of getting diverticulitis. You can do this by taking steps to prevent constipation.
Some people avoid nuts, seeds, berries, and popcorn. They believe that these foods might get trapped in the diverticula and cause pain. But there is no proof that these foods cause diverticulitis or make it worse.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
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Current as of: August 9, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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