Crohn’s Disease causes severe inflammation of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. It most often affects the small intestine, but can strike any area of the GI tract, from the mouth to the anus. In addition to the pain caused by inflammation, it can cause diarrhea, stomach ulcers, malnutrition and other complications like anemia.
Unfortunately, at this time, a cure for Crohn’s is not available, but steps can be taken to treat and help control the disease. The sooner treatment begins in the course of the disease, the easier it is to control symptoms and complications.
Crohn’s Treatments typically includes various combinations of surgery, anti-inflammatory drugs, steroids, immunosuppressants, antibiotics, anti-TNF drugs (TNF is short for Tumor Necrosis Factor), antidiarrheals and other symptom-suppressing drugs. Changes to diet and lifestyle may also be helpful. Crohn’s treatment varies widely, as does the location and severity of the disease, and response to therapy differs from individual to individual.
Health Maintenance. Gastroenterology has provided a range of treatment options for patients afflicted with the disease, but even the best Crohn’s treatment requires lifestyle changes. In very mild cases, medication such as an immunosuppressant combined with an antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory drug may work, but most people also have to make dietary changes. For someone with Crohn’s Disease, ensuring that the body gets adequate nutrition while avoiding foods that aggravate the disease is very important.
Many people receive a treatment that helps control flare-ups and allows you to enjoy life without interruptions. Even with medication, flare-ups are often inevitable. In severe cases, periodic hospitalization for pain management may be necessary. Tube feeding (the insertion of a tube to deliver food directly to the stomach) is often used to address malnutrition, or to prevent vomiting due to Crohn’s. As with all conditions, the sooner that symptoms are treated, the lower the likelihood that such drastic interventions will be needed.
Learn more about Crohns, its symptoms and complications at About Crohn’s Disease.
Gastroenterology is the study of the GI (gastrointestinal) tract. You will most likely see a gastroenterologist, a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating diseases of the digestive system. Your gastroenterologist will discuss possible treatment options, which may include surgery, immunosuppressants, and other drugs to help control symptoms and infection.