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Diveritculitis is an inflammation of diverticula which represent outpouchings in the colon wall. Sometimes the inflammation and infection can become recurrent. When these attacks keep happening or when infection is so severe that it spreads throughout the abdomen, surgery must be performed. Surgery is sometimes done as an emergency but can often be done on an elective basis. Patients who have only one mild attack usually do not need surgery. Surgery is only performed when diverticulitis is severe or recurrent.