Q

Crohn's Disease

What is Crohn's disease?

A Answers (7)

  • A , Emergency Medicine, answered
    Crohn’s disease is an autoimmune disorder, in which your immune system literally attacks the cells lining your digestive tract. That leads to ulcerations and bleeding of the digestive tract, and even other complications such as infections, abscesses, fistulas, and blockages.
     
    Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, fatigue and weight loss. Many patients with Crohn's also have symptoms that are outside the digestive tract, such as mouth sores, rashes, joint pain, and eye problems. 
     
    There is no cure for Crohn’s, but there are medications that patients can take to modulate the immune system’s response and improve their symptoms. Another thing you can do is monitor your symptoms to see if any specific foods worsen the condition, and cut back on them. It’s also important to quit smoking. Smoking worsens symptoms and increases the chance you’ll need surgery.
     
    Most patients with Crohn's need to be followed closely by a gastroenterologist, who can monitor their symptoms, guide them through treatment, and help keep them on track and as symptom-free as possible. 
  • Crohn’s disease, also known as inflammatory bowel disease, is a chronic autoimmune disease, meaning the immune system attacks the body’s own cells. Although it can occur in any part of the gastrointestinal tract, the condition usually occurs in the ileum, which is the part of the gastrointestinal tract where the small and large intestines meet. Crohn’s disease can cause inflammation, thickening of the intestinal wall and the formation of deep ulcers.
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  • A Colorectal Surgery, answered on behalf of
    What Is Crohn's Disease?
    Crohn's disease is an inflammatory bowel disease, says Roger Hsiung, MD, a colorectal surgeon at Southern Hills Hospital. In this video, he compares it to diabetes in that there is no cure, but it can be controlled.
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  • A Internal Medicine, answered on behalf of
    Crohn's disease is a chronic, inflammatory disorder of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Crohn's disease can involve any part of the GI tract from the mouth to the anus.

    There are about anywhere fro, 10,000 to 47,000 new diagnoses of Crohn’s disease annually. There is unfortunately no cure for Crohn's disease, so oftentimes, the medications that get you better have to be coupled with medications that keep you better. You will also need close monitoring for side effects and disease activity, because up to 75% of people who have Crohn's disease will require at least one surgery.

    It's a very aggressive disease process, and without appropriate monitoring, medications and oftentimes appropriate surgery, Crohn's disease, left untreated and uncontrolled, can have severe consequences.
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  • Crohn's disease is a chronic disorder that causes inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Although it may cause inflammation in any area of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the anus, it most commonly affects the small intestine and/or colon. Crohn's disease causes painful swelling that often results in diarrhea, or frequent, loose, watery stools.

    Crohn's disease is one of the two types of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) that affect the intestines. The other IBD is called ulcerative colitis (UC). The symptoms of these two illnesses are very similar, which often makes it difficult to distinguish between the two. In fact, about 10% of colitis (inflamed colon) cases cannot be diagnosed as either ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease. When doctors cannot diagnose the specific IBD, the condition is called indeterminate colitis. As the disease progresses, sometimes a case of indeterminate colitis can later be diagnosed as either Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.

    Unlike ulcerative colitis, which only affects the superficial, or outermost, tissue layers (called mucosa) of the colon, Crohn's disease can affect any layer of tissue in the gastrointestinal tract. Crohn's disease often spreads deep into the layers of affected tissues. Also, unlike ulcerative colitis, the inflammation is not consistent throughout the bowel. There may be healthy bowel tissue/mucosa in between areas of diseased bowel.

    Although Crohn's disease can develop at any age, it is most commonly diagnosed in people 20-30 years old. Crohn's disease generally affects men and women equally. The disorder can affect any ethnic group. However, people of Jewish heritage are most likely to develop Crohn's disease, while African Americans are less likely to develop it. In addition, people with family histories of Crohn's disease are about 30 times more likely to develop the disorder, suggesting that some cases may be inherited.

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  • An ongoing condition that causes inflammation of the digestive tract, also called the GI tract. It can affect any part of the GI tract—from the mouth to the anus. It often affects the lower part of the small intestine, causing pain and diarrhea.

    This answer is based upon source information from the National Women's Health Information Center.

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  • Crohn's disease is the inflammation of the lining and walls of the large and/or small intestine. It may also affect other parts of the digestive system and can spread deep into the tissue. The most common symptoms of Crohn's disease are diarrhea and abdominal pain, usually on the left lower side of the abdomen. In more severe cases of Crohn's disease, the inflammation may cause stricturing (a narrowing of the intestines caused by excess scar tissue) and fistulas (inflammatory tunnels that burrow through the intestines to either the skin or the bladder).

    Crohn's disease can cause bleeding in the GI tract, which may lead to anemia (a loss of red blood cells resulting in extreme tiredness or fatigue). This disease also can cause nausea, vomiting, fever, weight loss (because the intestines may not be able to absorb enough nutrients from food), joint pain, and skin problems.

    3 people found this helpful.
This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.
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