In the acute phase of diverticulitis it is important to have an accurate diagnosis. A straight abdominal radiograph is regularly the first to be ordered. This is followed by computed tomography (CT) if the results from the straight abdominal radiograph show that this is necessary. A variety of other abdominal radiological investigations is also available. The gastrogaffin swallow and follow-through or gastrogaffin enema is regularly used in patients who are thought to have an obstruction. This water-soluble medium does not cause harm if it leaks out through a perforation, because in time it will be absorbed. The gastrograffin may also help free the bowel from obstruction by increasing the water flow through the narrowing.
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