Ulcerative colitis is a inflammatory bowel disease of the inner lining of the large intestine (colon) and rectum. Its symptoms are similar to those of Crohn’s disease but only the lining of the colon and rectum can be affected. It can be difficult to diagnose with certainty ulcerative colitis and not Crohn’s disease.
It is believed that viruses or bacteria that cause unknown ulcers cause the disease. Common symptoms include abdominal cramps, blood in stool, diarrhoea, frequent stools, weight loss and fatigue. They usually appear because of stress or to the absorption of certain foods. Studies suggest that people who eat a lot of junk food, as in a large quantity of chocolate and cola, are more prone to the disease.
The disease is permanent. Only the removal of the entire colon can remove the disease completely. Some people may avoid surgery depending on the severity of the disease. Medication will alleviate symptoms and their frequency. They may indeed disappear for a long time. Unfortunately, they will return. We must without fail be monitored by a doctor because this disease can promote the development of colorectal cancer. In very rare cases, the inflammation of the colon will prevent the person from moving. It is then necessary to consult a doctor immediately.
Since it is always impossible to identify with certainty the cause of ulcerative colitis, it is difficult to prevent it from happening. It is recommended that persons who have inflammatory disease of the intestines see a gastroenterologist each year.
If you are suffering from ulcerative colitis, you should avoid foods that aggravate your symptoms. These include spicy foods, alcohol, certain vegetables (especially raw), caffeine and certain dairy products. Foods to avoid may vary from one person to another. It is also recommended to drink lots of water and to follow a healthy diet that includes lean meat, poultry, fish and eggs. Stress can make it more difficult to digest. It is therefore necessary to reduce stress as much as possible by relaxation techniques and exercise.
Among the prescribed drugs include anti-inflammatory, aminosalicylates (mézalamine and mézalazine), corticosteroids (prednisone, methylprednisolone, and hydrocortisone), immunosuppressive agents, antispasmodics and antidiarrheals. However, avoid aspirin, and naproxen. If the pain is mild, you can take acetaminophen.
If the medication is not enough, the colon and rectum will have to be removed. The surgeon will proceed with an ileostomy or an anastomosis iléoanale. In the first case, we will use a small opening in the abdomen, a stoma for the evacuation of feces in a pouch. In the second case, will not remove the anus.