A    A    A

Ulcerative Colitis

Sponsored Links

The Colon is a part of the digestive system. It is commonly called as the large intestine. Colon plays an important role in the gastro intestinal system. Absorption of the nutrients from undigested food as well as passing the waste from the body into the rectum in the form of stools is carried out by the colon. The colon ends in the rectum, that is connected to the anus. Thus, helping in excretion. It is prone to digestive ailments such as ulcerative colitis, a chronic condition.

What is Ulcerative Colitis?

Ulcerative colitis is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and to some extent is related to Chron’s disease. This long-term ailment affects the inner lining of the large intestine as well as rectum. The characteristics of this disease are open sores and ulcers.

What are the Causes of Ulcerative Colitis?

The causes of ulcerative colitis are still under investigations. The suspected causes are very vague and one can say various factors play a role in developing this disease. These factors include the following:

  • Genetic factors that make an individual genetically prone to develop colitis
  • Environmental factors such as diet or a certain substances in the environment that lead to ulcers in the colon
  • Autoimmune diseases wherein the immune system starts attacking its own digestive system. This can occur when a microbial infection of the intestine triggers an immune response within the body.

What are the Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis?

The symptoms of ulcerative colitis do not develop overnight. This is a long-term chronic disease that develops over the years. The symptoms may occur slowly over time. Once the disease turns severe, one may start suffering from sudden, severe attacks. These symptoms include:

Ulcerative colitis may lead to other health problems as well. These problems include:

Many patients suffer from mild symptoms of the disease. Children with this disease often suffer from growth and development disorder. The symptoms may appear and disappear from time to time. This makes it difficult to predict whether the disease has been completely cured or not.

How is Ulcerative Colitis Diagnosed?

Ulcerative colitis diagnoses involve many tests and procedures to be carried out. Some of these tests include:

How is Ulcerative Colitis Managed?

Sponsored Links

Ulcerative colilits is managed with the help of medications as well as surgery. Medications include:

  • Anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Immune system suppressors
  • Antibiotics
  • Antidiarrheals
  • Pain relievers

Surgery includes proctocolectomy, that is removal of the colon and rectum. Speak to your doctor regarding other alternative procedures now available to treat ulcerative colitis.

Ulcerative colitis can be controlled with the help of medications. In extreme cases, the removal of the colon and rectum becomes necessary. Probiotics also help in providing relief from the symptoms. As the causes are unknown, prevention is not possible. Thus, make sure you get yourself clinically examined annually for early detection of this disease.

What is the Prognosis for Ulcerative Colitis?

Ulcerative colitis has no cure, but can be controlled. Studies have shown that after 10 years of proper treatment, the rate of remission is high. There are patients who never experience remissions, but suffer from the symptoms of disease. Only about 10% patients develop serious complications. And about 15 to 40% patients have to undergo surgery to remove the colon. One of the complications of ulcerative colitis is colon cancer. This disease develops in only 5% of the patients. It develops after about 8 to 10 years of diagnosis of the disease. Thus, it is very important to follow the treatment suggested by an experienced healthcare provider.

Ulcerative colitis can be controlled with the help of medications. In extreme cases, the removal of the colon and rectum becomes necessary. Probiotics also help in providing relief from the symptoms. As the causes are unknown, prevention is not possible. Thus, make sure you get yourself clinically examined annually for early detection of this disease.

Written by: Saptakee sengupta
Date last updated: February 2, 2015