Curbside Consultation of the Colon: 49 Clinical Questions

Brooks D. Cash, MD, FACP, CDR, MC, USN

Question 46: When Do I Need To Refer A Patient With Diverticular Bleeding For A Colectomy And What Tests Should Be Done Before This Happens? (continued)

Scott L. Itzkowitz, DO, FACP

Colonic diverticular bleeding is the most common cause of rapid hematochezia (maroon or bright red bleeding), accounting for approximately 42% of cases of massive gastrointestinal blood loss.1 Although diverticulosis is very common, diverticular bleeding only occurs in about 15% patients with this condition. Approximately one-third of patients with diverticular bleeding will be classified as having massive bleeding.2 Bleeding diverticuli are most often found in the right colon and rarely accompany diverticulitis, which is more common in the left colon. Approximately 50% of patients with…