Crohn’s disease is part of the inflammatory bowel diseases grouping. Individuals with Crohn’s disease suffer chronic inflammation in the GI tract. More than 700,000 Americans have been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. While it can occur at any age, the most typical patients are diagnosed with Crohn’s disease when they are between 15 and 35 years old. At this time the reasons for Crohn’s disease are not clear. Genetics, heredity and environmental factors are thought to be main reasons why certain individuals have Crohn’s disease.
The first step is to get a medical diagnosis. This can rule out any other inflammatory bowel diseases, such as ulcerative colitis. Once a patient is diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, the next step is to figure out a way to reduce the negative effects of the disease. Often this can be done through lifestyle changes, such as reducing stress or improving one’s diet. Next, treatments for Crohn’s disease are considered ranging from medication to surgery. Medications suppress inflammation, which can help reduce the number of flare-ups related to Crohn’s disease. If lifestyle changes and medications aren’t successful, patients may need to have surgery. In fact, up to three-quarters of Crohn’s patients have to have some sort of surgery of the GI tract in their lifetime. This is to remove diseased segments of the bowels as needed.
Besides having Dr. Chattoo diagnose Crohn’s disease, there are certain symptoms that are common for Crohn’s sufferers. These include constipation, abdominal cramps, chronic diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. As a result of these symptoms, individuals may also experience fever, weight loss, loss of appetite, or night sweats. People with Crohn’s also tend to have a lack of energy and increased fatigue, commonly due to the chronic inflammation.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!