What are the inflammatory bowel diseases?
Ulcerative colitis causes inflammation within the rectum (known as "proctitis") and the colon ("colitis"). The inflammation irritates the inner lining of these areas of bowel, but it does not spread into the muscle layers deeper within the intestinal wall. Crohn's disease, by contrast, can cause inflammation or complications anywhere from the mouth to the rectum, and
the inflammation can injure the full thickness of the intestinal wall. Arthritis means inflammation of joints. Inflammation is a body process that can result in pain, swelling, warmth, redness, and stiffness. Sometimes inflammation can also affect the bowel. When it does, that process is called inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic disorder that causes an inflamed and swollen digestive tract or intestinal wall. When the digestive tract becomes inflamed or swollen with IBD, sores (ulcers) form and bleed. This in turn, can cause abdominal pain, watery diarrhea, blood in the stool, fatigue, reduced appetite, weight loss, or fever. The two most common forms of IBD are ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD). A healthy digestive system removes nutrients from food so they can be absorbed into the bloodstream. It then stores the unwanted waste until it passes out of the body. Food moves from the esophagus to the small intestine, where the nutrients are absorbed. The leftover water and waste move to the large intestine (colon), then through the rectum and out the anus.
Inflammatory bowel disease is characterized by chronic intestinal inflammation that results in clinical symptoms such as diarrhea, bleeding, abdominal pain, fever, joint pain, and weight loss. These symptoms can range from mild to severe, and may gradually and subtly develop from an initial minor discomfort, or may present themselves suddenly with acute intensity. IBD is a prevalent cause of chronic illness in a large segment of the patient population. It can manifest itself in two different forms: Ulcerative Colitis (UC) and Crohn's Disease (CD). Although the two conditions can appear clinically very similar, UC primarily involves inflammation of the colon and rectum, as opposed to the upper GI tract. Crohn's Disease, on the other hand, impacts a greater area of the upper intestinal digestive tract, and is thus more likely to trigger malabsorption, along with chronic vitamin and nutrient deficiencies.
The two primary types of inflammatory bowel disease are Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. These two diseases have many similarities and sometimes are difficult to distinguish from each other. However, there are several differences. For example, Crohn's disease can affect almost any part of the digestive tract, whereas ulcerative colitis almost always affects only the large intestine. The cause of these diseases is not known. More recently recognized inflammatory bowel diseases include collagenous colitis, lymphocytic colitis, and diversion colitis.
More information on inflammatory bowel diseases (ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease)
What are the inflammatory bowel diseases? - Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic disorder that causes an inflamed and swollen digestive tract or intestinal wall.
What causes inflammatory bowel diseases? - The cause of inflammatory bowel disease is not known. Chronic inflammation present in the intestines of persons with both forms of IBD damages the bowel.
What are the symptoms of inflammatory bowel diseases? - Symptoms of inflammatory bowel diseases can include chronic diarrhea, abdominal cramps or pain, fever, and blood or mucus in the stool.
How is inflammatory bowel disease diagnosed? - To make a diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease, a doctor must first exclude other possible causes of inflammation.
What're the treatments for inflammatory bowel disease? - Inflammatory bowel disease is treated with medication, exercise, and sometimes, surgery. Treatments for IBD are directed against the inflammation in the bowel.
What're the medications for inflammatory bowel disease? - Medications for inflammatory bowel disease include sulfasalazine, corticosteroids, immunosuppressives, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
What is Crohn's disease? - Crohn's Disease is a chronic illness that causes irritation in the digestive tract. Crohn's disease occurs in the last portion of intestine (ileum).
What types of Crohn's disease are there? - There are five subtypes of Crohn's disease, distinguished by the gastrointestinal area in which the disease occurs.
What causes Crohn's disease? - The cause of Crohn's disease is unknown. There is now evidence of a genetic link as Crohn's frequently shows up in a family group.
What are the symptoms of Crohn's disease? - The symptoms of Crohn's disease include abdominal pain, diarrhea, fever, loss of appetite and weight loss.
What are the complications of Crohn's disease? - Common complications of Crohn's disease include the development of an intestinal obstruction, pus-filled pockets of infection, and abnormal connecting channels.
How is Crohn's disease diagnosed? - The diagnosis of Crohn's disease is suspected in patients with fever, abdominal pain and tenderness, diarrhea with or without bleeding, and anal diseases.
What're the treatments for Crohn's disease? - Treatment for Crohn's disease is mainly symptomatic. Medications are very effective at improving the symptoms of Crohn's disease.
What medications cure Crohn's disease? - Medications for Crohn's disease sulfasalazine, Asacol, Pentasa and Dipentum. Mesalamine is useful both to achieve and maintain remission.
What's the surgery for Crohn's disease treatment? - Surgery to remove part of the intestine can help Crohn's disease but cannot cure it. The most used operation in Crohn disease is removing the diseased part of the intestine.
What Crohn's disease diet is suggested? - Diet may have to be restricted based on symptoms or complications of Crohn's disease. No particular food has ever been implicated in causing Crohn's disease.
Crohn's disease in children - Crohn's disease is most often diagnosed in young adulthood. Children facing Crohn's disease have significant self-image issues to deal with.
Crohn's disease and pregnancy women - Women with Crohn's disease who are considering having children can be comforted to know that the vast majority of such pregnancies will result in normal children.
What is ulcerative colitis? - Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory disease of the bowel, that usually affects the distal end of the large intestine and rectum.
What types of ulcerative colitis are there? - Doctors categorize ulcerative colitis by the amount of colon involved. Variability of symptoms reflects differences in the extent of disease and the intensity of inflammation.
What causes ulcerative colitis? - The cause of ulcerative colitis is not known, but heredity and an overactive immune response in the intestine may be contributing factors.
What are the symptoms of ulcerative colitis? - The symptoms vary according to the extent of the disease. The most common symptoms of ulcerative colitis are abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea.
What are the complications of ulcerative colitis? - Bleeding, the most common complication of ulcerative colitis, often causes iron deficiency anemia.
How is ulcerative colitis diagnosed? - Diagnosis of ulcerative colitis is suspected based on the symptoms that a patient is experiencing. The most important method of diagnosis is endoscopy.
What are the treatments for ulcerative colitis? - Treatment of ulcerative colitis depends on the location and severity of a patient's disease, the presence of complications.
What ulcerative colitis medications are available? - Medications for ulcerative colitis include 5-ASA Compounds, anticholinergic drugs, steroids, and immunosuppressive drugs.
What surgery treats ulcerative colitis? - Surgery for ulcerative colitis involves removal of the entire colon, regardless of whether all or only a portion of the colon is diseased.
Collagenous colitis and lymphocytic colitis - Collagenous colitis and lymphocytic colitis are chronic diseases in which certain kinds of white blood cells infiltrate the lining of the large intestine.