Noun, pl. diverticula
1. (Science: anatomy, surgery)
A small sac-like structure that sometimes forms in the walls of the intestines, diverticula can trap particles of food (especially small seeds and undigested grains) and become very inflammed and painful (this condition is called diverticulitis). (biology-online.org)
2. The medical or biological term for an outpouching of a hollow (or a fluid-filled) structure in the body. Depending upon which layers of the structure are involved, they are described as being either true or false. (wikipedia.org)
3. A small growth off an organ such as the large intestine. (wiktionary.org)
4. A herniation through the muscular wall of a tubular organ (especially the colon). (wordnetweb.princeton.edu)
Word origin: From Latin dīverticulum, alternative form of dēverticulum (“byroad; deviation”), from dēvertō (“turn away, turn aside”).