Not to be confused with diverticulosis or the development of pouches in the weak wall of the colon, diverticulitis causes these pouches to become inflamed or infected. Diverticulitis ranges in severity, and in some cases can result in complications including abscesses, bowel obstructions, fistulas, blood loss, and peritonitis. The symptoms that precede these complications can help patients and doctors alike identify the condition early.
Despite this high incidence of diverticulosis, most people aren't aware of it because they don't present with any symptoms. However, 25 percent of people with diverticulosis will develop acute diverticulitis. One of the first symptoms to appear may be cramping or pain. Since the left colon is the most common location of the diverticula, pain generally begins at the lower left side of the abdomen.
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