Inflammatory Bowel Disease

What is Inflammatory Bowel Disease?

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a condition of the digestive tract that is characterized by chronic inflammation that is both painful and debilitating. It is important to diagnose and treat IBD as early as possible as the condition can sometimes lead to severe and life-threatening complications. The two most common types of inflammatory bowel disease include Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis.

Ulcerative Colitis

This type of inflammatory bowel disease causes severe and long-lasting inflammation to develop in part of your digestive tract. Ulcerative Colitis generally only affects the inner lining of the colon and rectum, or the large intestine. Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis often develop very gradually.

Crohn’s Disease

This type of inflammatory bowel disease develops anywhere within the tissue lining the digestive tract and often spreads much deeper in the tissue than Ulcerative Colitis does. Crohn’s disease often spreads into different areas of the digestive tract, and causes abdominal pain, diarrhea and can even lead to malnutrition.

Symptoms of IBD

Symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease vary from patient to patient depending upon the type and severity of the disease. Symptoms of IBD often include:

• Abdominal cramps

• Severe abdominal pain

• Diarrhea

• Bloody stool

• Urgent bowel movements

• Fever

• Loss of appetite

• Weight loss

• Anemia (caused by blood loss through stool)

Treatment Options

If left untreated, inflammatory bowel disease could cause severe health complications both internally and externally. Inflammatory bowel disease could cause bleeding from ulcers, a ruptured bowel, perianal disease, fistula, strictures, obstruction and even lead to the development of colon cancer.

One of the biggest aspects of treatment for inflammatory bowel disease is following a healthy diet. Both fiber and dairy often play a large role in the onset of symptoms. Dr. Bass can help you develop a diet that will be most beneficial for your inflammatory bowel disease. For many patients, inflammatory bowel disease cannot be treated through diet and home remedies alone. Depending on the severity of your condition, Dr. Bass may recommend surgical treatment to help you find relief from your symptoms of IBD. Dr. Bass will discuss the benefits of a colonoscopy procedure or colorectal surgery in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease.

If you would like more information regarding inflammatory bowel disease, please contact us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Bass.