The intestine performs very important functions for the body, among them , it is responsible for the absorption of various nutrients and the elimination of toxins. Therefore, it needs to function regularly, but some problems, such as Crohn’s disease, hinder its functioning.
This inflammation is worrying because it triggers several symptoms and can lead to complications, some very serious. Therefore, it causes health damage and reduces the individual’s quality of life. So you need treatment.
In this article we will talk a little more about this problem so that you understand why it needs medical monitoring and control. Read on to learn about the characteristics of this inflammation, its symptoms, complications and treatments.
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What is Crohn’s disease?
The Crohn’s disease is a chronic inflammation that affects the gastrointestinal tract affects the full thickness of the intestine. It is considered a serious problem, and can affect any structure between the mouth and the anus, however, it does not usually reach the rectum, despite the complications that affect the anal area.
The problem gets its name because the first author to describe this disease was Burril B. Crohn, who produced an article about it in 1932.
The Crohn’s disease affects people of both sexes on the same frequency. It is more common for the diagnosis to be made in individuals under 30 years of age, with the range of 14 to 24 being the one with the most cases.
What are the causes of this problem?
It is not known for sure what can cause Crohn’s disease . Despite this, it is a fact that, when the immune system is deficient, there is a greater chance of inflammation to establish itself. This is because the intestine overreacts to an infectious, environmental or food agent.
In addition, there are other risk factors that favor inflammation, such as oral contraceptives and smoking. In this second case, in addition to triggering the disease, cigarettes also trigger crises of the problem.
What are the symptoms of Crohn’s disease?
The Crohn’s disease manifests itself in regular episodes throughout life. They are very varied crises, which can be brief or long, lighter or more serious and trigger several symptoms, the most common being:
- weight loss;
- lack of appetite;
- colic and / or abdominal pain;
- chronic diarrhea, which may contain blood.
These symptoms can alleviate alone after a crisis, without the need for treatment. However, it is difficult when the individual is able to fully recover after a single crisis. Even so, and despite the intensity of the symptoms, it is possible for the person to lead a productive and active life.
It is also not clear why the symptoms of Crohn’s disease manifest and alleviate on their own, nor what determines the severity of the crises. In any case, recurrent inflammation occurs in the same portion of the intestine, but can affect adjacent areas when surgical removal of the most commonly affected portion is performed.
What are the complications of Crohn’s disease?
The Crohn’s disease need to follow up and control because it can bring various health complications such as:
- bowel obstruction;
- perforation / rupture of the intestine;
- abdominal abscesses;
- fistulas between the intestine and the skin or other organs;
- anal fissures;
- colon cancer (large intestine);
- toxic megacolon;
- rectal hemorrhage;
- malabsorption of nutrients;
- kidney and gallstones.
- urinary infections.
- aphthous stomatitis;
- inflammation in the joints;
How is Crohn’s disease treated?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for Crohn’s disease. It can only be controlled by means of drugs available, which reduce inflammation and alleviate symptoms. However, some individuals may need surgery at some point.
It is done in order to extract areas of the intestine to promote prolonged and indefinite relief of symptoms. However, it does not lead to a cure , although the use of medications after surgery helps to minimize the chances of recurrence in these areas of the intestine that have been operated on.
Most individuals need daily medication to control this disease. These medications are used to decrease inflammation and immune system activity and in this way, control the severity of the disease and its symptoms.
In the last few decades, important progress has been made with the launch of new drugs that are used a few times a month and have a much greater effect on controlling the disease. There are some options for combining these medications that should be individualized for each patient depending on their general health, their symptoms and complications of Crohn’s disease and their response to medications that are traditionally taken daily.
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Since Crohn’s disease has no cure, it needs to be controlled. For this, monitoring with a specialist doctor is essential. Control is done with different classes of drugs, diets and abstention from tobacco. Thus, it is possible to live with the problem with quality of life, avoiding its complications.