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Crohn's Disease Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Crohn's Disease is a disorder, in which, the digestive tract is inflamed from mouth to the anus. The infection mostly occurs in small intestine in the area called ileum. The patient suffers from swelling in the complete lining of the intestinal tract. The swelling in intestine may cause diarrhoea. The disease is common in men and women, and it is found in families, mostly in the first relatives of the family. People of Jewish heritage, are more at risk and African-America are a low risk of developing this disease.

Causes for Crohn's disease

The cause for Crohn's disease is unknown. The immune system of the body attacks the body parts and causes the problem. Why the immune reaction triggered is unknown. The patient has white blood cells accumulation in the intestine and it causes ulcers in the intestine. Researchers are trying to find a link between the antigens found in the environment and the intestinal infection. Researchers also found a high level of protein in the body of the patients, which is called tumor necrosis factor.

Symptoms of Crohn's disease

1. The patient suffers from swelling of the anal sphincter tissue and swelling of the muscles at the end of the colon.

2. Ulcers and fissures can be seen inside the anus and on the skin close to the anus.

3. Mucus and pus in faeces

4. Abdominal pain and fever

5. Tenderness around the anus

6. Anaemia

Crohn's colitis is the inflammation of the colon, which has symptoms such as abdominal pain and diarrhoea .The patient may have peri-rectal abscesses and anal fistulae.

Crohn's enteritis is the inflammation, where only the small intestine is inflamed.

Crohn's terminal ileitis is the problem, in which, only the ileitis is damaged.

Diagnosis of Crohn's disease

1. The patient may be diagnosed through physical examination and blood tests.

2. Barium test can indicates about the abnormalities in the small intestine.

3. Sigmoidoscopy or a colonoscopy is also helpful in diagnosing the patient suffering from Crohn's disease. Colonoscopy can indicate all the abnormalities of the large intestine.

4. Biopsy can also be done from the inner lining of the intestine.

5. The main problem in the Crohn's disease is the blockage of the intestine caused by the thickening of the inner lining of the intestine. The swelling of the intestine and sores of the intestine may spread to other parts of the body such as bladder, skin or face. The fistulas become infected and fissures may be deep in the mucus membrane. The patient may suffer from deficiency of protein and minerals because of low absorption and loss of proteins from the body.

The symptoms of the disease also include skin irritation, arthritis, and inflammation of mouth, eyes, kidney and liver.

Treatment of Crohn's disease

1. Anti-inflammatory drugs are given to the patients to control inflammation, but some patients could not tolerate certain anti-inflammatory drugs. There are also some side effects of the drugs such as nausea, heartburn, diarrhoea, vomiting and headache.

2. Steroids are given to the patients and the steroids are called cortisone, but there are severe side effects of using corticosteroids.

3. Drugs to suppress the immune system is given, which reduces the effect of the infection.

4. Fluids and anti diarrhoea treatment is given to the patient and sometimes, high calorie liquid formulae is given to children suffering from the problem.

5. If the medicines fail to work, the patient has to go for surgery, where the infected part of the intestine is removed.

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