Diverticulitis: when and how to operate?

Dig Liver Dis. 2004 Jul;36(7):435-45. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2004.03.001.


Diverticular disease, and particularly diverticulitis, has increasing incidence in industrialised countries. Diverticular disease can be classified as symptomatic uncomplicated disease, recurrent symptomatic disease, and complicated disease. Conservative or medical management is usually indicated for acute uncomplicated diverticulitis. Indications for surgery include recurrent attacks and complications of the disease. Surgical treatment options have changed considerably over the years along with the inventions of new diagnostic tools and new surgical therapeutic approaches. Indications and timing for surgery of diverticular disease are determined mainly by the stage of the disease. In addition to this major factor, the individual risk factors of the patient along with the course of the disease after conservative or operative therapy do play a big role in decision-making and treatment of this disease. In this context, the purpose of this article is to review the surgical treatment of diverticulitis with regard to indications, timeliness of operative intervention, operative options and techniques, and special circumstances.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Digestive System Surgical Procedures / methods
  • Diverticulitis / classification
  • Diverticulitis / diagnosis
  • Diverticulitis / surgery*
  • Diverticulitis, Colonic / surgery
  • Humans