Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that affects the digestive tract of the person, causing swelling and irritation. This chronic disease affects any part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, from the mouth to the anus, but most commonly, it affects the end of the small bowel called the ileum and the beginning of the colon. Crohn’s disease symptoms begin gradually and become worse over time.
The disease affects the digestive system of different people differently in which the most commonly affected area is the small intestine. If the symptoms are not taken care of on time, the inflammation spreads into the deeper layers of the bowel. The person suffering from this disease should take the symptoms very seriously and reach the healthcare provider on time. As the effect increases, it becomes both painful and devastating and can cause life-threatening complications to the person as well. But if controlled on time with appropriate medications and therapies, the person may function well for a very long time.
According to the research, it is found that the disease can happen in anyone whether it is men, women, or children but the symptoms majorly appear in young age people who are in their late teens, 20s, and early 30s. However, the disease can affect anyone at any age, especially people who are regular cigarette smokers.
There are different types of Crohn’s disease that affect different sections of the digestive tract in various ways. Let us know about it in detail.
Ileocolitis: It is among the most common type of Crohn’s disease in which inflammation occurs in the small intestine with some parts of the large intestine and colon.
Ileitis: In this type, the small intestine (ileum) gets affected with an increase in swelling and inflammation.
Jejunoileitis: In this, the upper half of the small intestine, which is also known as the jejunum, get affected with a patchy area of inflammation.
Gastroduodenal: In this type, the top area of the small intestine, which is also known as the duodenum, gets affected along with inflammation and irritation in the stomach.
Crohn’s Disease Symptoms and Causes
The person suffering from Crohn's disease may experience the following symptoms:
- Abdominal cramps
- Blood in the stool
- Loss of appetite
- Skin issues such as rashes, soreness, and bumps.
- Irregular menstrual cycle.
- Kidney stone
- Weight Loss
As the disease progresses, the symptoms become more severe and troublesome. Some may include:
- Anal fissures and fistulas may cause pain and drainage near the anus.
- The person may suffer from ulcers anywhere from the mouth to the anus.
- Changes in vision along with redness and pain in the eyes.
- Pain in the joints, sometimes with swelling.
According to the researchers, there is no known cause of this disease but it has been found that some factors can increase the risk of developing the conditions and those factors are:
- Some bacteria in the digestive tract may affect the immune system of the body, which attacks its healthy cells.
- Cigarette smoking doubles the risk.
- A high-fat diet sometimes increases the chance of getting this disease.