Crohn's Disease (cont.)
First, your doctor will review your medical history. A specialist called a gastroenterologist may perform a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy to obtain bowel tissue for analysis. Other tests your health care provider may order include:
Grades of Crohn's Disease
According to the American College of Gastroenterology, Crohn's disease activity is characterized as:
What Triggers a Worsening of Crohn's Disease?
Crohn's disease is characterized by periods of being symptomatic, which can last for days or weeks, interspersed with periods of remission (no symptoms are present). Remissions can last days, weeks or even years.
Factors that worsen Crohn's disease include:
How Is Crohn's Disease Treated?
Though treatments cannot cure Crohn's disease, they can help most people lead normal lives.
Crohn's disease is treated primarily with medications, including:
Response to therapy is evaluated within several weeks of starting treatment. Treatment is continued until remission is obtained (at which time, the health care provider may consider maintenance therapy). No improvement calls for more aggressive therapy. Nutritional supplements may also be recommended by your doctor.
Surgery is required in about one-half of people with Crohn's disease to treat complications of the disease, such as, fistulas, abscesses, hemorrhage, and intestinal obstructions. Surgery may also be necessary in people who do not respond to medications.
In most cases, the diseased part of the bowel is removed and the two healthy ends of bowel are joined together (anastomosis). This surgery can allow many people to remain symptom-free for years, but it is not a cure since Crohn's disease often recurs at the site of the anastomosis.
- Allergic Skin Disorders
- Bacterial Skin Diseases
- Bites and Infestations
- Diseases of Pigment
- Fungal Skin Diseases
- Medical Anatomy and Illustrations
- Noncancerous, Precancerous & Cancerous Tumors
- Oral Health Conditions
- Papules, Scales, Plaques and Eruptions
- Scalp, Hair and Nails
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs)
- Vascular, Lymphatic and Systemic Conditions
- Viral Skin Diseases
- Additional Skin Conditions