Crohn’s Disease is a form of Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or IBD. Essentially, Crohn’s Disease causes the gastrointestinal tract to be chronically inflamed. Many High Desert patients easily become confused because Crohn’s Disease has similar signs and symptoms of other types of IBD, including ulcerative colitis.
However, the part of the gastrointestinal tract that is effected by Crohn’s Disease is different, which is why Apple Valley patients may be given this diagnosis versus another one. Crohn’s Disease commonly impacts the small bowel and the beginning of the colon, whereas ulcerative colitis only effects the colon.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Crohn’s Disease?
Given the fact that Crohn’s Disease can impact any part of the gastrointestinal tract, it is not unusual for different patients to experience different symptoms. The symptoms for Crohn’s Disease can vary greatly based on the part of the gastrointestinal tract that is effected and the severity of the disease in the individual patient. Patients should discuss the symptoms that they are having with their general surgeon in order to determine the proper diagnosis.
Patients who are experiencing inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract will notice a few specific symptoms. Some of the common symptoms associated with this type of irritation of the gastrointestinal tract include frequent and persistent diarrhea, constipation or bowel obstruction, urgent need to go to the bathroom, bleeding of the rectum, moderate to severe abdominal cramping, a frequent feeling of incomplete evacuation of the bowels.
Note that some patients may experience one of these symptoms while others may experience multiple symptoms at the same time. All symptoms should be discussed with a general surgery expert in order to determine the best course of treatment.
Patients who have Crohn’s Disease may experience other symptoms, as a result, of their condition that are not directly related to the gastrointestinal tract. Other common symptoms of Crohn’s Disease include weight loss, lack of appetite, night sweats, fever, fatigue and irregularity of the menstrual cycles.
It is especially important that people talk to their general surgeon about signs and symptoms of Crohn’s Disease if they are experiencing any of the gastrointestinal tract symptoms in combination with these general symptoms. Patients should note that there are treatment options available and that a general surgery expert can help them determine the best course of action that will improve their symptoms and their quality of life.
Crohn’s Disease is considered a chronic disease, and it can be diagnosed at any point in a person’s life. In general, most patients will experience periods of time where the symptoms are worse and periods of time where they do not notice any symptoms at all. Children who are diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease should be monitored carefully, as they can experience growth and development delay as a result of this condition.
The only way to know for certain if a patient has Crohn’s Disease is to perform the proper diagnostic tests. If you are experiencing any of these signs or symptoms, be sure to contact your physician today for more information.