Clinics in Colon and Rectal Surgery 2018; 31(04): 243-250
DOI: 10.1055/s-0037-1607963
Review Article
Thieme Medical Publishers 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA.

Management of Diverticular Bleeding: Evaluation, Stabilization, Intervention, and Recurrence of Bleeding and Indications for Resection after Control of Bleeding

Mohammed Iyoob Mohammed Ilyas
1  Department of Colon and Rectal Surgery, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Michigan
Eric J. Szilagy
2  Department of Colon and Rectal Surgery, West Bloomfield Hospital, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Michigan
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
22 June 2018 (online)


Diverticular bleeding is the most common cause of lower gastrointestinal bleeding with nearly 200,000 admissions in the United States annually. Less than 5% of patients with diverticulosis present with diverticular bleeding and present usually as painless, intermittent, and large volume of lower gastrointestinal bleeding. Management algorithm for patients presenting with diverticular bleeding includes resuscitation followed by diagnostic evaluation. Colonoscopy is the recommended first-line investigation and helps in identifying the stigmata of recent hemorrhage and endoscopic management of the bleeding. Radionuclide scanning is the most sensitive but least accurate test due to low spatial resolution. Angiography is helpful when patients are actively bleeding and therapeutic interventions are performed with angioembolization. Surgery for diverticular bleeding is necessary when associated with hemodynamic instability and after failed endoscopic or angiographic interventions. When the bleeding site is localized preoperatively, partial colectomy is sufficient, but subtotal colectomy is necessary when localization is not possible preoperatively.