Yasser Saloum and patient wearing masks and talking.

AdventHealth Offers the Latest Personalized Treatments for Diverticular Disease and Diverticulitis

The gastroenterologists and colon and rectal surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa are experts in creating personalized treatment plans for patients with diverticular disease. If complications arise, such as diverticulitis and related health issues, AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa’s doctors are experienced in providing the least invasive, most effective treatment options.

What Are Diverticulitis and Diverticulosis?

As people grow older, the chances increase that they will develop diverticular disease. It begins as the muscles in the walls of the colon become weaker. When they get weak enough, small pouches called diverticula develop in the lining of the colon. This is a condition called diverticulosis. It affects up to half of the people in the U.S. over the age of 60, though it can happen to people as young as 30. Most people with diverticulosis do not experience symptoms. When diverticulosis does cause symptoms, they tend to be mild and similar to irritable bowel syndrome or another gastrointestinal condition.

Diverticulosis symptoms can include:

  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Mild cramping in the abdomen

Diverticulitis

If the diverticula in the colon lining become infected and swollen, it causes a painful condition called diverticulitis. Diverticulitis can lead to complications that require hospitalization and/or colorectal surgery.

Causes of Diverticular Disease

Because diverticulosis is a condition of aging, it is thought to be unpreventable in many cases. Once the diverticula have formed, there do appear to be some risk factors for why they become inflamed and infected and cause diverticulitis. One of these factors is a family history of diverticulitis.

Preventable factors related to diverticulitis include:

  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Being overweight
  • Taking steroids

If you have been diagnosed with diverticulosis, you and your care team can take steps to lower your chances of it causing diverticulitis. You may be encouraged to make certain dietary changes (with more – or possibly less – fiber in your diet), get more exercise, lose weight and/or quit smoking. If you experience symptoms with diverticulosis, your gastroenterologist may prescribe certain medications that can help.

Diverticulitis Symptoms

However, despite the best medical management, diverticular disease may still lead to diverticulitis.

Symptoms of diverticulitis include:

  • Abdominal pain and tenderness, especially on the lower left side
  • Constipation
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Nausea and/or vomiting

Diagnosis of Diverticulosis or Diverticulitis

If your doctor suspects you may have diverticulosis or diverticulitis, you will be given a physical and digital rectal exam. In addition, your gastroenterologist will use some of the following tests to reach an accurate diagnosis:

  • Blood tests, including liver function tests
  • Urine tests
  • CT scan
  • Barium enema (lower GI series)
  • Colonoscopy

Diverticulitis Treatment

Treatment for diverticulitis often depends on the severity of symptoms, if diverticulitis has happened before or not, and if there are diverticulitis-related symptoms such as an intestinal blockage.

Medical Care for Diverticulitis

Medical treatments for diverticulitis symptoms include:

  • Antibiotics to treat infection
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Pain medications
  • Liquid diet and bed rest
  • Diet changes (e.g., high fiber and/or low residue diets)

Surgery for Diverticulitis

Patients with diverticulitis are at risk of developing a bowel obstruction, fistula or abscess as well as a dangerous condition called peritonitis. In these cases, colorectal surgery may be needed. Your doctor may also recommend surgery if you experience chronic, severe or recurring diverticulitis so you can find better relief from your symptoms. Finally, surgery may be the best option for some patients with weakened immune systems.

Surgery for diverticulitis usually involves a bowel resection with or without a colostomy. The advanced colon and rectal surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa have ways of offering colorectal surgery as minimally invasive laparoscopic or robotic procedures. These less invasive approaches help patients avoid a large, open abdominal incision, making recovery easier and faster than what would usually be experienced otherwise.

If you have or could have diverticular disease and are looking for a comprehensive GI care team to better manage your condition, call AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa at Call813-615-7557 for an appointment.


Colon, Rectal and Anal Disorders

9 items. To interact with these items, press Control-Option-Shift-Right Arrow
  • Colon and Rectal Cancer

    Our experienced gastroenterologists can diagnose and treat colon and rectal cancer in Tampa. Learn more about treatment and surgery options. 

  • Anal Cancer

    Our colon and rectal surgeons can help diagnose and treat anal cancer in Tampa. We offer anal cancer surgery when necessary. 

  • Anorectal Disorders

    Surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa offer advanced treatments for hemorrhoids, anal fissures, anal abscesses, anal fistulas and pilonidal disease.

  • Colon and Rectal Polyps

    Colorectal surgeons and gastroenterologists at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa offer advanced treatments for colon polyps, including sessile polyp and adenomatous polyp.

  • Diverticular Disease

    The advanced gastroenterologists and colorectal surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa help patients find cures for fecal incontinence.

  • Fecal Incontinence

    The advanced gastroenterologists and colorectal surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa help patients find cures for fecal incontinence.

  • Colon and Rectal Surgery

    Our skilled colon and rectal surgeons provide the latest treatments for colorectal cancer, inflammatory bowel disease and other conditions that affect the colon and rectum. 

  • Colonoscopy / Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

    A colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy is a way for doctors to see inside the colon and rectum to identify issues and perform biopsies. 

  • High Resolution Anoscopy (HRA)

    Colorectal surgeons at AdventHealth Digestive Institute are HRA providers (High Resolution Anoscopy) for anal cancer screening.

A person's hands holding equipment
Faster Recoveries. Better Outcomes.

Minimally Invasive and Robotic Surgery

All the surgeons at the Digestive Health Institute (DHI) at AdventHealth Tampa have a large depth of experience in offering minimally invasive surgery. 

Meet The Experts

5 items. To interact with these items, press Control-Option-Shift-Right Arrow. These items are in a slider. To advance slider forward, press Shift-Command-Right Arrow. To advance slider backward, press Shift-Command-Left Arrow.

Allen Chudzinski

MD, FACS, FASCRS

Colon & Rectal Surgeon

Haane Massarotti

MD, FACS, FASCRS

Colon & Rectal Surgeon

Gavin Sigle

MD, FACS, FASCRS

Colon and Rectal Surgeon

Deowattie John

MPH, MSN, ANP-BC

Nurse Practitioner

Todd Lime

WOCN, RN

Ostomy Specialist

Dr. Cory O'Brien checking patient's throat at AdventHealth Digestive Health Institute Tampa.

Surgical Consultations For Digestive Cancer Without The Wait

Appointments Within 5 Days for Patients with Cancer

At AdventHealth Digestive Institute Tampa, we know that after being diagnosed with cancer, patients want and often need to begin treatment quickly. So we make it a priority to offer appointments for cancer surgery consultations within 5 business days, and often earlier. 

Patients who are newly diagnosed with cancer, or have just found out they have cancer recurrence, qualify for this priority access. Our surgeons will make themselves available to see you right away, even for a second opinion. We want to help you start your treatment as soon as possible.

If you have been diagnosed with a cancer of the digestive system, don’t wait. 
Call the Digestive Health Institute at Call813-615-7557.

News and Info

3 items. To interact with these items, press Control-Option-Shift-Right Arrow. These items are in a slider. To advance slider forward, press Shift-Command-Right Arrow. To advance slider backward, press Shift-Command-Left Arrow.
Blog

What Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women Should Know About the COVID-19 Vaccine

The CDC suggests that women who are pregnant are free to decide to take the vaccine, and that the vaccine should be made available to them if they wish to take it.
Blog

Specialty Acute Care Close to Home in Land O’ Lakes

AdventHealth Connerton is a specialty acute care hospital for patients who require a continued hospital stay.
Blog

How to Respond When a Loved One is Hesitant About the COVID-19 Vaccine

Here are a few questions your loved ones may have about the COVID-19 vaccine and ideas for how you can respond.