What You Should Know About Crohn's Disease

What is Crohn's Disease?

Crohn's disease is a chronic inflammatory process primarily involving the intestinal tract.  It may involve any part of the digestive tract from the mouth to the anus, it most commonly affects the last part of the small intestine (ileum) and/or the large intestine (colon and rectum).

What are the symptoms of Crohn's Disease?
Common symptoms include cramping, abdominal pain, diarrhea, fever, weight loss, and bloating.  Not all patients experience all of these symptoms, and some may experience none of them.

Who is affected by Crohn's Disease?

Any age group may be affected, but the majority of patients are young adults between 16 and 40 years old.

What causes Crohn's Disease?

The exact cause is not known.  However, current theories center on immunologic and/or bacterial cause.

How is Crohn's Disease treated?

Initial treatment is almost always with medication. In more advanced or complicated cases of Crohn's disease, surgery may be recommended.

Surgery often provides effective long-term relief of symptoms and frequently limits need for medications such as steroids.

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