Diverticulosis vs Diverticulitis: What Are the Differences?

Q:
Diverticulosis vs diverticulitis: What are the differences?

A:
Diverticulitis and diverticulosis may sound the same, but there are key differences that set each condition apart.

Diverticulitis is a condition brought on by infection or rupture of diverticula, which are bulges forming in the lower part of the large intestine or colon. The risk of developing diverticula is usually higher for people over 40. Diverticula themselves do not cause many problems, but once the condition progresses into diverticulitis, it can be quite severe.

Diverticulosis, on the other hand, is the presence of multiple diverticula in the colon, resulting from long-time consumption of low-fiber diet. Similar to diverticulitis, diverticulosis is mainly seen in persons over the age of 40 and becomes far more common with age.

Here we will outline some differences between diverticulitis and diverticulosis.

Comparing diverticulitis and diverticulosis signs and symptoms:

  • Signs and symptoms of diverticulitis include severe pain that may last for days and takes place in the lower left side of the abdomen, nausea and vomiting, fever, abdominal tenderness, constipation, and in some cases diarrhea.
  • Majority of patients with diverticulosis are asymptomatic, meaning they do not exhibit any symptoms. Symptoms only arise when inflammation is present and the condition progresses into diverticulitis.

Diagnosis for diverticulitis and diverticulosis:

  • To properly diagnose diverticulitis, your doctor will conduct a physical examination, checking your abdomen and pelvic region. Other tests include blood tests, pregnancy test for women, liver function tests, stool tests, and CT scans, which can help gauge severity of diverticulitis.
  • Diverticulosis is diagnosed using one of three tests: barium examination, colonoscopy, or CT scan.

Keyword: diverticulosis diverticulitis; diverticulosis vs diverticulitis

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.