The number of people living with the painful and undesirable symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is alarming. Doctors use ‘inflammatory bowel disease’ as an umbrella term for inflammatory bowel conditions such as Chron’s disease, colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). As of August 2017, estimates revealed that approximately 3 million adults in the United States have IBD. However, that figure only considered people 18-years-old and up who have been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. This means the ~3 million IBD cases could, in reality, be far higher than we thought. Of all IBD cases, Crohn’s disease is often in the spotlight, mostly because its cause is unknown. In a recent study, however, scientists believe they’ve found a viable option for Crohn’s disease treatment.
A Brief Summary of Crohn’s Disease Treatment, Symptoms, and More
What causes Crohn’s disease? No one really knows. According to doctors, it could be an autoimmune disease. Crohn’s research suggests that the disease is triggered by the immune system, wherein it attacks harmless bacteria or food in your gut causing an inflamed (and potentially damaged) bowel. One thing is for sure, though – Crohn’s does not only affect the bowels but joints, eyes, mouth and skin, no thanks to the chronic inflammatory activity of this IBD.
In March 2016, Health Union conducted a life-altering national Crohn’s patients survey which revealed:
“[It] was not uncommon for patients to see multiple healthcare professionals (HCPs), have numerous office visits, and endure multiple diagnostic tests before receiving a [Crohn’s disease] diagnosis. Results demonstrate an impact on such things as the ability to work or exercise, but also on overall quality of life and social activities. Respondents wished more people understood the disease and its impact.”
Crohn’s Disease Symptoms
The most common symptoms of Crohn’s disease can include:
- Chronic diarrhea
- Rectal bleeding
- Weight loss
- Abdominal pain and tenderness
- Cramping and bloating