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is a condition that causes small pockets along your intestine called diverticula to become inflamed or infected. This is caused by hard bowel movement, food, or bacteria that get stuck in the pockets.

Signs and symptoms include the following:

  • Pain in the lower left side of your abdomen
  • Fever
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • An urge to urinate or have a bowel movement more often than usual
  • Bloody bowel movements
  • Bloating and gas

Seek care immediately if:

  • You have bowel movement or foul-smelling discharge leaking from your vagina or in your urine.
  • You have severe diarrhea.
  • You urinate less than usual or not at all.
  • You are not able to have a bowel movement.
  • You cannot stop vomiting.
  • You have cramps or severe abdominal pain and a fever.
  • You have new or increased blood in your bowel movements.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • You have pain when you urinate.
  • Your symptoms get worse or do not go away.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.


may depend on how severe your diverticulitis is. You may need antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection. Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency. You may need surgery or other procedures to treat complications of diverticulitis.

Clear liquid diet:

A clear liquid diet includes any liquids that you can see through. Examples include water, ginger-ale, cranberry or apple juice, frozen fruit ice, or broth. Stay on a clear liquid diet until your symptoms are gone, or as directed.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

You may need to follow up in 2 to 3 days for a colonoscopy. When your symptoms are gone, you may need a low-fat, high-fiber diet to prevent diverticulitis from developing again. Your healthcare provider or dietitian can help you create meal plans. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

© 2017 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.