What Is Zenker’s Diverticulum and How Is It Treated

What Is Zenker’s Diverticulum?

Zenker’s diverticula are small sacs located between the sigmoid colon and rectum. They form when bile from the liver passes through tiny holes in the wall of the intestine (the sigmoids). These small openings allow bile to flow into your bloodstream. When these passages become blocked or inflamed, they cause cramping pain in your abdomen.

How Is Zenker’s Diverticula Treated?

The first step in treating zenker’s diverticula is to remove them. There are two main ways of doing this: surgical removal or laparoscopic surgery. Surgery involves cutting out the offending sac with a scalpel or knife. Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure where a camera is used to see inside the body without having to open up organs such as the stomach and intestines.

Laparoscopic surgery is generally considered to be safer than other types of surgery because it does not require general anesthesia. However, there have been cases where complications occur during surgery. Some of these include bleeding, infection, blood clots, perforation of the bowel and even death due to complications from the operation itself.

Fortunately, the mortality rate for this kind of surgery is extremely low. The most common side effects are mild and easily manageable. These are mainly digestive issues and can be gotten over with medication or a change in diet. Antacids can also be used to help with stomach acid reflux, a particularly common issue which results in heartburn.

1 out of every 3 people will experience this condition at some point during their lives. While it can be annoying and uncomfortable at times, it should go away by itself or with over-the-counter medication.

As stated in the beginning of this post, zenker’s diverticula surgery complications can be serious. The most common ones result from cutting the tissue inside the abdomen and bowel too deeply. Severe bleeding is also a possibility during and after operations. If this occurs, you may need a blood transfusion or else you could lose enough blood to die.

Other less serious aftereffects are also possible, but should not be a cause for concern. These include gas, bloating, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. While a change in diet can help to alleviate these symptoms, it is often temporary. To get rid of the diverticula permanently, it is necessary to have surgery.

This is recommended if you experience pain in your abdomen on a regular basis.

The main factors in determining whether or not to take action are the severity of your symptoms and your overall health. While it is true that many people live their whole lives without experiencing diverticulosis, it can be treated if the need arises.

What Are the Benefits of Treating Zenker’s Diverticula?

Pain in your abdomen is arguably the most common symptom of zenker’s diverticula. This pain can result in a decrease in appetite.

Sources & references used in this article:

Flexible endoscopic treatment of Zenker’s diverticulum: a new approach by CJJ Mulder, G Den Hartog, RJ Robijn, JE Thies – Endoscopy, 1995 – thieme-connect.com

Meditation on the pathogenesis of hypopharyngeal (Zenker’s) diverticulum and a report of endoscopic treatment in 545 patients by JJM van Overbeek – Annals of Otology, Rhinology & …, 1994 – journals.sagepub.com

Endoscopic treatment of Zenker’s diverticulum by K Hashiba, AL de Paula, JGN da Silva… – Gastrointestinal …, 1999 – Elsevier

Pathogenesis and methods of treatment of Zenker’s diverticulum by JJM van Overbeek – Annals of Otology, Rhinology & …, 2003 – journals.sagepub.com

Surgical treatment of Zenker’s diverticulum by K Aggerholm, P Illum – The Journal of Laryngology & Otology, 1990 – cambridge.org

Surgical treatment of Zenker’s diverticulum by Y Yuan, YF Zhao, Y Hu, LQ Chen – Digestive Surgery, 2013 – karger.com

Zenker’s diverticulum: exploring treatment options by A Bizzotto, F Iacopini, R Landi… – Acta …, 2013 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov