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April 1958

Diverticulitis of the Right Colon

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Services of Coney Island Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1958;76(4):564-568. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1958.01280220084016

Historical Background  In 1849 Cruveilhier first described colonic diverticula. In 1853 Virchow first described the inflammatory disease and named it diverticulitis. Bristowe, Jones, Habershon, Lane, Graser, and Bland-Sutton contributed to the early literature.1 In 1907 Mayo reported five cases of sigmoid resection for diverticulitis, and he is credited with the first surgical application. The greatest impetus to the study of this entity came in 1913, when de Quervain, in Switzerland, made the diagnosis by x-ray. The next year Case, in the United States, reported criteria for x-ray diagnosis.2 It soon became evident that diverticulosis and diverticulitis were most frequently found in the left colon. This report, however, is concerned primarily with the right colon. The first case of cecal diverticulitis was described by Portier in 1912.

Pathology  Diverticulum of the right side is a pathological entity distinct from that of the left side. Right-sided diverticula are usually solitary.