The Reality Of Chrohn's Disease

Explores the causes, symptoms and treatment for Chrohn's Disease, which causes an inflammation in the small intestine.

Chrohn's disease causes an inflammation in the small intestine. It usually occurs in the lower part of the intestine, but can affect any part of the digestive tract, including the mouth, stomach and large intestine. The symptoms of the disease include abdominal pain and frequent bowel movements.

There is no known cause of Chrohn's disease, but because it often affects people in the same family, doctors think it is genetic. The disease strikes males and females equally. Chrohn's disease also effects young children. In children the disease may cause delayed development.

The most common held belief is that the disease is caused by the body's reaction to a virus or bacterium by causing inflammation in the intestine. While doctors have eliminated emotional stress as a cause for the disease, they have not ruled out as to whether it is the result of a malfunction in one's immune system.

Chrohn's disease is difficult to diagnose because its symptoms are similar to other intestinal disorders like irritable bowel syndrome and colitis. Symptoms of the disease include persistent diarrheah and abdominal pain. People affected by the disease may also experience rectal bleeding, weight loss and fever.

Doctors detect Chrohn's disease when a patient demonstrates the most common symptoms. Often a stool sample is taken to determine whether there is bleeding or an infection in the intestines. A patient may also be asked to have an x-ray taken of their small intestine, where inflammation in the intestine will be revealed. Doctors also use a colonoscopy to determine if there is any inflammation in the small intestine. This procedure, commonly used to detect colon cancer, involves using a long tube to probe into the large intestine.

Chrohn's disease manifests itself because the inflammation of the intestine causes blockage in the intestine. The disease can also result in sores and ulcers. Digestive problems also occur, as nutrients are unable to be absorbed.

There is no cure for Chrohn's disease. People afflicted with the disease are strongly encouraged to watch their diet, by eating foods which do not aggravate digestion. Other complications with the disease include arthritis, skin problems, inflammation in the eyes, kidney stones and diseases of the liver.

Treatment may also include drugs and surgery. Some people also have periods of remission with the disease, but most people with the disease require regular medical care.

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