Review of new evidence to treat colonic diverticulitis may help doctors

August 27, 2012, Canadian Medical Association Journal

Recent evidence and new treatments for colonic diverticulitis that may help clinicians manage and treat the disease are summarized in a review in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal).

Diverticular disease, in which sac-like protrusions form in the wall of the colon, is common in developed countries, although it is increasing throughout the world, likely because of lifestyle changes. In people with the disease, about 25% will develop symptoms, which include abdominal pain and changed bowel habits, often leading to a diagnosis of . The widespread use of colonoscopy has led to more diagnoses of "uncomplicated" , that is, signs of diverticular inflammation without perforation of the colon, abscess or other complications.

Recent evidence indicates that inflammation after an acute episode is a risk factor for recurrence. Mesalamine may show promise in helping prevent repeat episodes, as recent preliminary studies indicate it is significantly better than placebo in preventing recurrence of diverticulitis. However, these results have been published only in abstract form. Probiotics may also show promise in treating the disease, although high-quality evidence is lacking.

"The pathophysiology of diverticular disease is extremely complicated because of the multifactorial contributing factors, including diet, colonic wall structure, intestinal motility and possible ," writes Dr. Antonio Tursi, Gastroenterology Service, Azienda Sanitaria Locale, Barletta-Andria-Trani, Andria, Italy.

"With recent advances in our understanding of this complex disease, new therapeutic approaches to the management of diverticulitis may further change practice."

Explore further: Vegetarian diet may protect against common bowel disorder

More information: www.cmaj.ca/lookup/doi/10.1503/cmaj.120580

Related Stories

Vegetarian diet may protect against common bowel disorder

July 20, 2011
Vegetarians are a third less likely to get a common bowel disorder (diverticular disease) than their meat eating counterparts, finds a new study published in the British Medical Journal today.

Gastrointestinal perforation rare in rheumatoid arthritis

July 8, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Gastrointestinal (GI) perforation is a rare but serious condition that affects patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), most frequently in the lower GI tract, according to a study published online June 21 in ...

Recommended for you

Flu may be spread just by breathing, new study shows; coughing and sneezing not required

January 18, 2018
It is easier to spread the influenza virus (flu) than previously thought, according to a new University of Maryland-led study released today. People commonly believe that they can catch the flu by exposure to droplets from ...

Zika virus damages placenta, which may explain malformed babies

January 18, 2018
Though the Zika virus is widely known for a recent outbreak that caused children to be born with microencephaly, or having a small head, and other malformations, scientists have struggled to explain how the virus affects ...

Study reveals how MRSA infection compromises lymphatic function

January 17, 2018
Infections of the skin or other soft tissues with the hard-to-treat MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) bacteria appear to permanently compromise the lymphatic system, which is crucial to immune system function. ...

New study validates clotting risk factors in chronic kidney disease

January 17, 2018
In late 2017, researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) discovered and published (Science Translational Medicine, (9) 417, Nov 2017) a potential treatment target to prevent chronic kidney disease (CKD) ...

Fresh approach to tuberculosis vaccine offers better protection

January 17, 2018
A unique platform that resulted in a promising HIV vaccine has also led to a new, highly effective vaccine against tuberculosis that is moving toward testing in humans.

Newly-discovered TB blood signal provides early warning for at-risk patients

January 17, 2018
Tuberculosis can be detected in people with HIV infection via a unique blood signal before symptoms appear, according to a new study by researchers from the Crick, Imperial College London and the University of Cape Town.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.