Diverticulitis occurs only on a diverticulosis site. This condition refers to the presence of many diverticula in the colon. It is very common in the elderly. Most often undiagnosed, it affects more than 50% of people over 70 years of age. Among the causes: the responsibility for a low-fiber diet would be invoked, and explain the high prevalence of the disorder in the West. But, as we said, the precise causes of this disease remain poorly known.
If diverticulosis usually does not give symptoms, it may be associated with irritable bowel syndrome. In this case, it can lead to digestive disorders (diarrhea or constipation) or stomach aches ...
These diverticula most often go unnoticed. This is how they are usually discovered during a systematic exploration such as a screening colonoscopy.
In 10 to 20% of cases, diverticula can lead to complications ... Obesity, physical inactivity and smoking are associated with an increased risk of complications.
The first possible complication is irritation, or local inflammation of a diverticulum. This is called diverticulitis. It is then that symptoms can appear. The infection and the inflammatory reaction are then in the foreground, and may evolve other complications.
The doctor to consult, in addition to the attending physician, is a gastroenterologist.