Crohn's Disease in Hattiesburg, MS
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What is Crohn's disease?
Crohn's disease is one aspect of a group of conditions referred to as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This condition manifests in painful irritation of the digestive system. The disease normally includes the small bowel as well as the colon, but it may have ramifications for any part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract from the mouth to the anus. Crohn's disease is unique from the other form of IBD, referred to as ulcerative colitis.
Crohn's disease frequently affects the entirety of the bowel wall and often spreads to even deeper parts of the affected intestinal anatomy. This gastrointestinal affliction is typically quite uncomfortable and can sometimes grow into more serious complications. If you or a loved one live with the symptoms of Crohn's disease, we urge you to contact Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC. Our board-certified GI physicians have experience treating Crohn's disease in Hattiesburg, MS are pledged to assist patients in increasing their quality of life by implementing tested treatment options.
What causes Crohn's disease?
The precise cause of Crohn's disease is presently a mystery. However, there are a few factors that seem to play a role in the onset of Crohn's disease and its difficulties.
- Immune system: It is possible that internal viruses or bacteria can trigger Crohn's disease. When the body initiates the immune system to engage a virus or bacteria, an inappropriate immune system reaction can attack the cells in the digestive system as well. As a result, portions of the small intestine and the colon come to be inflamed.
- Genetics: An individual may inherit genes from one or both parents that place them at a more pronounced chance of suffering from Crohn's disease. As much as 20% of people with Crohn's disease have a relative who also has been diagnosed with the condition or a different inflammatory bowel disease. It is most often found in people between the ages of 20 and 30.
What are some common symptoms of Crohn's disease?
Symptoms associated with Crohn's disease tend to manifest slowly and can range from mild to severe. Crohn's disease symptoms could present as:
- Pain in the abdomen
- Loss of usual menstrual cycle
- Bloody stool
- Sudden loss of weight
- Bleeding from the rectum
- Cramps in the stomach
- Mouth sores
- Poor development in children
- Drainage or pain around or near the anus
You should contact Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC right away if you become aware of lasting changes regarding your bowel habits or you have any of the following symptoms:
- Fever extending more than a day
- Unintentional weight loss
- Ongoing diarrhea
- Blood in your stool
- Persistent and/or severe abdominal pain
How is Crohn's disease treated?
At this time, there is no known cure for Crohn's disease, and treatment will be different from person to person. The primary goals of Crohn's disease treatments are to control the inflammation that triggers symptoms and then reach and remain in remission. In the best cases, the disease will go into long-term remission in a person who receives correct care. Crohn's disease might be treated with one or a combination of the below-listed treatment options.
Antibiotics: Antibiotics may be able to destroy the bacteria that trigger the unusual immune system reaction that causes the inflammation. These are not a mainstay of therapy but may be used in collaboration with additional therapies.
Anti-inflammatory medications: Steroids or corticosteroids may be administered to control inflammation while choosing a long-term treatment option. Corticosteroids assist in the reduction of swelling in one's body and can also be utilized in tandem with immune system suppressors.
Long-term anti-inflammatory therapies: These therapies tackle the body's unusual immune reaction to viruses and bacteria. Some of the immunosuppressant medications your Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC provider might prescribe include: methotrexate, natalizumab, vedolizumab, ustekinumab, azathioprine, infliximab, adalimumab, and certolizumab.
Diet: Your gastroenterologist might recommend a special diet to alleviate symptoms and assist in entering remission.
Surgery: In some cases, individuals who have Crohn's disease could need surgery to manage bleeding, infection, fistulas, or blockages if medication is not performing as hoped. Others may need surgery to extract the damaged part of the intestine.
Medications that treat the symptoms: Specific medications and supplements might also be suggested to assist in the management of Crohn's disease symptoms. These may include:
- Vitamin B-12 shots
- Iron supplements
- Vitamin D and calcium supplements
Professional care is available for Crohn's disease in Hattiesburg, MS. Contact Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC to discover more about possible treatments.
Does Crohn's disease cause health complications?
Intestinal blockages can occur in people with Crohn's disease. A blockage occurs because the bowel wall swells or thickens as a result of scar tissue and inflammation. In addition, ulcers have been seen to cause tunnels that could grow through swollen areas of the intestine to surrounding intestinal tissue or, in some cases, other organs.
If you have Crohn's disease, you may lack sufficient amounts of protein, vitamins, or calories in the food you consume. This could happen due to the fact that you may be unable to absorb nutrients from the food you consume, you suffer from a nauseated stomach preventing you from eating a sufficient amount of sustenance, or you might be losing protein through the intestine.
Additional complications of Crohn's disease may include:
- Swelling of the mouth or eyes
- Dermatological issues
- Kidney stones
Can Crohn's disease be fatal?
Crohn's disease isn't considered a fatal disease. However, if left unmanaged and untreated, over time, Crohn's disease may progress to health complications that may be fatal. Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC may provide information on multiple clinical studies and treatment programs to help manage the symptoms and enhance the lives of those living with Crohn's disease.
Patient-centered treatment for Crohn's disease
At Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC, we understand the impact Crohn's disease can have regarding your general health and day-to-day life. Our board-certified gastroenterologists specialize in treating GI diseases like Crohn's disease, and our team is devoted to delivering personalized, expert service to every one of our patients. To request a consultation with a GI doctor in Hattiesburg, MS who can help you with Crohn's disease, we encourage you to reach out to our team today.
Crohn's Disease FAQs
How is Crohn’s disease diagnosed?
Diagnosing Crohn’s disease may be achieved with a combination of tests. At Hattiesburg GI Associates, PLLC, our gastrointestinal providers may start the process by discussing your health history, symptoms, and any familial history of IBD or Crohn's. After providing an examination, they may order endoscopic tests (such as an EGD and/or a colonoscopy) and lab testing of blood and fecal samples. MRIs, CT scans, and additional diagnostic imaging may also be used to confirm the presence of Crohn's disease.
Is Crohn’s disease a progressive condition?
Crohn’s disease is a chronic, long-lasting health condition that can vary among patients. Though Crohn's symptoms may range from mild to severe, the severity of the condition can also vary. Crohn’s disease can worsen as time goes by, and flare-ups might occur.
Will Crohn’s disease go away?
Currently, there is no method of curing Crohn’s disease. In some individuals, the disease might fall into remission when it is not in an active state. Seeking Crohn’s disease treatment and taking steps to reduce inflammation may help manage the condition and decrease its effects.
Do dietary habits impact Crohn’s disease?
Diet does not seem to be the reason behind Crohn’s disease. While some foods may initiate Crohn's flare-ups or certain effects, these can vary from person to person. Consult your GI physician about any possible dietary changes you might incorporate to help alleviate the symptoms of Crohn’s disease.
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