People with Crohn’s disease commonly experience abdominal cramps
or pain, diarrhea, fever, intestinal ulcers, and inflammation of other parts of the
body. Crohn’s disease most often occurs in the lower part of the small intestine
where it connects to the colon.
The level of severity in chronic colon conditions differs for
each individual. It can range from minor symptoms and hardly any discomfort all the
way to more frequent diarrhea and severe intestinal pain. e second major type of
IBD called ulcerative colitis, affects only the large intestine.
Like Crohn’s disease, the most common symptoms are abdominal pain
and bloody diarrhea, as well as fatigue, weight loss, nausea, and loss of appetite.
Often, sufferers believe the problems are related to the stomach due to the pain.
Other common ailments include inflammation of the joints, eye problems, and anemia
due to blood loss.
There is a wide variety of diagnostic procedures used to make the
appropriate diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease, including blood tests, barium
studies, and colonoscopy. The colonoscopy allows the doctor to see any
inflammation, bleeding, or ulcers that may be on the wall of the colon. Another
procedure used to identify inflammatory bowel disease is an upper endoscopy. This
procedure is used to view the esophagus, stomach, and upper small intestine.
Samples may be removed for a biopsy that is helpful to further analyze the affected
The exact cause of inflammatory bowel disease is not known. It is believed that
there may be a genetic link between relatives, and is most likely to occur during
the late teen years and twenties. The best treatment for inflammatory bowel disease
is a combination of therapies that have proven to be effective for many patients
with the disorder. A special diet designed specifically to the special needs of the
individual based on his or her symptoms is the first place to start.
Also, reducing stress and increasing rest and relaxation are
helpful. Certain medications may also be prescribed to reduce inflammation and
treat the possibility of bacterial infections. The last resort is surgery if
symptoms are not controlled by medications and diet.
Living with inflammatory bowel disease IBD can be difficult at
times, but not impossible to overcome. Following the doctor's advice and getting
plenty of rest can go a long way in treating the disorder. A supportive health care
professional and a positive attitude in addition to recommended treatments keep
symptoms under control so a normal lifestyle can be maintained.