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Our Services / Inflammatory Bowel Disease

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About Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory bowel disease can be downright debilitating if you don’t get the right treatment. At Carolina Digestive Health Associates, PA, in 13 locations throughout Charlotte, Belmont, Concord, Davidson, Matthews, Monroe, Huntersville, University, and Pineville, North Carolina, the state’s premier inflammatory bowel disease experts offer testing, diagnosis, and treatment for both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Book your appointment online, or call the office nearest you for inflammatory bowel disease care now.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Q & A

What is inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a group of conditions marked by irritation and inflammation of the intestines. It’s an autoimmune disorder, meaning that your immune system mistakes healthy cells for harmful germs, in this case, leading to inflammation. 

IBD specifically targets parts of your digestive system, which explains why it can cause serious gastrointestinal symptoms. 

What are the different forms of inflammatory bowel disease? 

Types of IBD include: 

Crohn’s disease

Crohn’s disease causes inflammation in your digestive tract, and it can appear anywhere from your mouth to your anus. 

With this type of inflammatory bowel disease, the inflammation develops in patches, with healthy tissue interspersed with inflamed tissue. Crohn’s disease can affect all layers of your tissue. 

Ulcerative colitis

Ulcerative colitis occurs in your colon. Unlike the patchy pattern of Crohn’s disease, this disease features continuous inflammation throughout the colon. Ulcerative colitis affects only the innermost layer of tissue in your colon. 

Microscopic colitis

Microscopic colitis causes inflammation in the colon. It mainly occurs in older people and in women. This disease got its name because tissue may appear normal during diagnostic testing such as colonoscopy, which means it requires a microscopic exam of the affected tissue.

While they’re all different in their own ways, inflammatory bowel diseases tend to share symptoms. So it’s important to know the common symptoms of IBD and seek help if you experience them.

What are the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease commonly causes: 

  • Abdominal cramping
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Bloody stool
  • Appetite loss and unplanned weight loss

Symptom intensity can vary, with severe irritable bowel disease often causing major disruptive issues in your life. You could develop anemia, rectal bleeding, or ulcers in your intestines. 

Some of the symptoms of other conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome, are similar to those of inflammatory bowel disease, but the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease are more severe and more likely to cause serious complications. 

How is inflammatory bowel disease treated?

Your doctor at Carolina Digestive Health Associates, PA, prescribes inflammatory bowel disease treatment based on the specific disease and the severity of your symptoms. Common approaches include medication, lifestyle changes, and dietary changes. In severe cases, you could need surgery. 

Carolina Digestive Health Associates, PA, offers expert care for IBD, so reach out for help by phone or through the online booking tool now.