What is Diverticulitis?

When you feel abdominal pain or tenderness, it is essential to visit your doctor. With a visit to Dr. Snow, you can diagnose and catch what is ailing you early.

What is Diverticulitis?

Diverticulitis is the presence of diverticula or small bulging pouches that can form in your digestive system. Diverticula are common, especially after the age of 40.

Common symptoms can include:

  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Abdominal tenderness
  • Constipation
  • Consistent pain in the lower left side of your abdomen

You need to get immediate medical attention when you have constant, unexplained abdominal pain, particularly if you have a fever, constipation, or diarrhea. It is crucial to catch it early to avoid any complications that can further put your health at risk. You are at risk with diverticulitis if you struggle with obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, a high diet of animal fat, and low fiber. You can, however, prevent it! By exercising regularly, eating more fiber, staying hydrated, and avoiding smoking, you can drastically decrease the chance of having this disease.

When you visit Dr.Snow, he will begin with a physical examination and run a few tests to rule out other potential causes for your abdominal pain. If you are diagnosed with diverticulitis, your treatment may consist of antibiotics and a liquid diet for a few days, and with luck, your diverticulitis will be cleared up in a few days!

If your symptoms are severe or non-responsive to oral antibiotics, he might prescribe intravenous antibiotics, and he may insert a tube to drain any abdominal abscesses.

In the most severe cases, Dr. Snow will perform surgery. There are two types of surgeries: primary bowel resection or a bowel resection with a colostomy.

Any way your symptoms come about, Dr. Snow will be there for you and ensure your after-care is just as detailed as when you came to visit the first time. He will likely have you come back for a colonoscopy six weeks after recovering to ensure there are no links between the diverticular disease and colon or rectal cancer. No matter the route, Dr.Snow will be there for you every step of your recovery.

It is Important to stay up to date with your regular screenings.

Often, a colon polyp does not cause symptoms but can be diagnosed by getting regular screening tests, like a colonoscopy.

The concern with polyps is that while most are harmless, some can develop into colon cancer, which can be fatal when found in later stages. Anyone can develop a polyp, but there is an additional risk for those aged 50 and above.

While most polyps do not cause symptoms, some cases show themselves through a change in

  • Stool color
  • Change in bowel habits
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Cramp-like pain in the abdomen

You should see your doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. 

Polyps form when mutations in specific genes cause cells to continue to divide even when they no longer need to. You are at a higher risk of developing polyps if you are over 50, use tobacco or alcohol, lack exercise, have type 2 diabetes, or struggle with obesity.

Polyps are hereditary, making you more likely to develop colon polyps or cancer if you have a grandparent, sibling, or parent who has been diagnosed with them. It is essential if there are polyps in your family medical history, you get regular screenings, just like any other genetic disease. Disorders such as Lynch, Gardner’s, serrated polyposis, or Peutz-Jeghers syndrome can cause polyps development. If you have been diagnosed with any of these, it is crucial to have regular screenings. These methods include a colonoscopy, virtual colonoscopy, flexible sigmoidoscopy, or a stool-based test.

If diagnosed with colon polyps, the course of treatment is to remove them. Depending on the size, the polyp can be removed with forceps or a wire loop, a minimally invasive surgery, and a colon and rectum removal in severe cases.

Some types of polyps are far more likely to become malignant than others. Still, a doctor who specializes in analyzing tissue samples, like Dr. Jeffrey Snow, will examine polyp tissue under a microscope to determine whether it is cancerous. Dr. Snow specializes in colorectal cancer surgery, where he removes the precancerous or cancer from the colon or rectal region. It is a minimally invasive surgery that targets segments of the bowel that are harboring cancer.

What is colon cancer?

Many colon cancer types are the most common, being adenocarcinomas, making up 95% of total colorectal cancer cases. This cancer is caused by cells forming on the rectum or colon lining through the growth of polyps. The symptoms of colon cancer consist of

  • Change in bowel behavior
  • Blood in the stool
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Cramps, Bloating, or Gas related pains
  • Diarrhea or constipation

When experiencing these symptoms, it’s important to visit your doctor, however, do not panic because these symptoms can share many other diagnoses. If you are diagnosed with colon cancer, the treatment course is a laparoscopic or a robotic colectomy. This minimally invasive surgery removes the cancerous bowel through a small incision followed by a quick recovery. With his experience and patient reviews, Dr. Snow is the best surgeon in South Florida for a reliable, safe, and prompt diagnosis and recovery.

Who is Dr. Jeffery Snow?

Dr. Jeffrey Snow is a native of Massachusetts and has spent his professional career in South Florida. He has been a senior partner at Surgery Specialists of South Broward for 20 years and active in hospital medical staff. He was named one of America’s top surgeons three years in a row and honored as one of Miami Metro Magazine’s Best Doctors in South Florida four years. His excellent staff is welcoming, friendly, and helpful while always giving you the professional medical attention you need. You can trust his experience and dedication to you and your family’s care.

If you are experiencing any symptoms mentioned above, are not doing completing your regular checkups, or believe you are at risk, make an appointment by calling 954-237-1123 or visiting our website https://jeffreysnowmd.com/ to make a virtual or in-person appointment. 

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