Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Diverticulosis Underlying Cause

Diverticulosis is caused by increased pressure on the intestinal wall from inside the intestine. As the body ages, the outer wall of the intestine becomes less flexible, and stool moves mores slowly through the intestine. This can increase the pressure inside the intestine. Straining during bowel movements and hard stool also increase the pressure.

The increased pressure stretches the wall of the intestine. Stretching causes thin, weak patches to form in the wall, which results in diverticulosis. A high fiber diet softens the stool, allowing the stool to move easily through the intestine, which reduces pressure inside the intestine. A diet that contains little or no fiber increases the risk of diverticulosis.

Continue to Diverticulosis Anatomy

Last Updated: Jan 28, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Diverticulosis References
  1. Hall NR. Managing diverticular disease. Practitioner. 2003 May;247(1646):392-6, 400, 402 passim. [12760128]
  2. Simpson J, Spiller R. Colonic diverticular disease. Clin Evid. 2004 Dec;(12):599-609. [15865664]
  3. Simpson J. Recent advances in diverticular disease. Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2004 Oct;6(5):417-22. [15341720]
  4. Stollman N, Raskin JB. Diverticular disease of the colon. Lancet. 2004 Feb 21;363(9409):631-9. [14987890]
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