Know all about Ulcerative Colitis | Causes, Symptoms, Risk Factors & Treatment

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Know all about Ulcerative Colitis | Causes, Symptoms, Risk Factors & Treatment

What Is Ulcerative Colitis?

Ulcerative colitis (UC) is an inflammatory bowel disease. It causes irritation, inflammation, and ulcers within the lining of your intestine (also called your colon). Ulcerative Colitis is controllable, and a few people usually have symptoms off and on for all times. Just like blood pressure and diabetes, you can very well control it.

What causes Ulcerative Colitis and what are the Risk Factors?

Ulcerative colitis happens when your system makes an error. Normally, it attacks invaders in your body, just like the cold. But once you have UC, your system thinks food, good gut bacteria, and therefore the cells that line your colon are the intruders. White blood cells that sometimes protect you attack the liner of your colon instead. They cause inflammation and ulcers.

Doctors aren’t sure why people get the condition. Your genes may play a role; the disease sometimes runs in families.

Things that will affect your risk of getting colitis include:

  • Age: If you’re between 15 and 30 years old or older than 60.
  • Ethnicity: The danger is highest in people of Ashkenazi Jewish descent.
  • Family history: Your risk could be up to 30% higher if you have a close relative with the condition.
  • Food and stress don’t cause it, but they will trigger a flare of symptoms.
  • Ulcerative colitis occurs due to Environmental and Genetic Factors

Types of Ulcerative Colitis

The type of colitis you've got depends on where it's in your body:

Ulcerative Proctitis is usually the mildest form. It’s only within the rectum, the part of your colon closest to your anus. Rectal bleeding could also be the main sign of the disease.

Proctosigmoiditis happens in your rectum and the lower end of your colon (you may hear the doctor call it the sigmoid colon). You’ll have bloody diarrhea, belly cramps, and pain. You’ll have the urge to poop, but you won’t be ready to. (Your doctor may call this tenesmus.)

Left-sided colitis causes cramps on that side of your belly. You’ll even have bloody diarrhea, and you would possibly reduce without trying. You’ll have inflammation from your rectum up through the left side of your colon.

Pancolitis often affects your entire colon. It can cause severe bouts of bloody diarrhea, belly cramps, pain, fatigue, and major weight loss. Acute severe ulcerative colitis is rare. It affects your entire colon and causes severe pain, heavy diarrhea, bleeding, and fever.

Symptoms Of Ulcerative Colitis

The main symptom of UC is bloody diarrhea. There could be some pus in your stools, too.

Other problems include:

  • Cramping belly pain
  • Sudden urges to poop
  • Not feeling hungry
  • Weight loss
  • Feeling tired
  • Fever
  • Dehydration
  • Joint pain or soreness
  • Canker sores
  • Skin sores
  • Eye pain once you see a bright light
  • Too few red blood cells, called anemia
  • Feeling such as you haven’t completely emptied your colon after you’ve been to the toilet
  • Waking up at night to go
  • Not being able to hold your stool in
  • Pain or bleeding with bowel movements
  • Your symptoms can flare up, go away, and come back. You might not have any for weeks or years.

Ulcerative Colitis Diagnosis

Your doctor will use tests to tell if you have UC instead of another gut disease. Blood tests can show if you've got anemia or inflammation. Stool samples can help your doctor rule out an infection or parasite in your colon. They can also show if there’s blood in your stool that you simply can’t see.

Flexible sigmoidoscopy lets your doctor check out the lower part of your colon. They’ll put a bendable tube into your lower colon through your bottom. The tube has a small light and camera on the end. Your doctor may additionally use a little tool to require a bit of the liner of your lower colon. This is called a biopsy. A doctor will check out the sample under a microscope.

Colonoscopy is the same process as sigmoidoscopy, only your doctor will check out your whole colon, not just the lower part. X-rays are less common for diagnosing the disease, but your doctor might want you to possess one in special cases.

Ulcerative Colitis Treatment

UC treatment has two main goals: The first is to think you are feeling better and provide your colon an opportunity to heal. The second is to prevent more flare-ups. You may need a mixture of diet changes, medication, or surgery to succeed in those goals.

Ulcerative Colitis Treatment

Diet: Some foods can make your symptoms worse. You might find that soft, bland food doesn’t bother you as much as spicy or high-fiber dishes. If you can’t digest the sugar in milk called lactose (meaning you’re lactose intolerant), your doctor may tell you to prevent eating dairy products. A diet with many fibers, lean protein, fruits, and veggies should provide enough vitamins and nutrients. Medicine. Your doctor may prescribe a couple of different sorts of drugs, including Antibiotics. These fight infections and let your intestine heal.

Aminosalicylates: These drugs have something called 5-aminosalicylic acid (5-ASA) that fights inflammation and helps control symptoms. You might get pills to swallow or an enema or suppository to place in your bottom.

Corticosteroids: If aminosalicylates don’t work or your symptoms are severe, your doctor might offer you these anti-inflammatory drugs for a brief time.

Immunomodulators: These help stop your immune system’s attack on your colon. They can take a while to take effect. You might not notice any changes for up to three months.

Biologics: These are made up of proteins in living cells rather than chemicals. They’re for people with severe ulcerative colitis.

Surgery: If other treatments don’t work or your UC is severe, you would possibly need surgery to get rid of your colon (colectomy) or colon and rectum (proctocolectomy). If you've got a proctocolectomy, your doctor might make a little pouch out of your intestine and fasten it to your anus. This is called ileal pouch-anal anastomosis (IPAA). It lets your body expel waste normally, so you don’t have to wear a bag to gather stool.

Ulcerative Colitis Complications

Complications of ulcerative colitis can include:

  • Bleeding: This can lead to anemia.
  • Osteoporosis: Your bones might become weak because of your diet or if you take a lot of corticosteroids.
  • Dehydration: you would possibly get fluids through a vein (intravenous, or IV) if your intestine can’t absorb enough.
  • Inflammation: This will affect your joints, skin, or eyes.
  • Fulminant colitis: If your UC attack is severe, your colon might burst, or infection could spread through your body. Your intestines stop moving waste, and your belly swells.
  • Megacolon: Fulminant colitis can cause your large intestine to swell or burst. This is a dangerous complication, and you’ll probably need surgery.
  • Liver disease. Your bile ducts or liver could become inflamed, otherwise, you could get connective tissue in your liver.
  • Colon cancer: Ulcerative colitis puts you at higher risk of getting carcinoma, especially if your whole intestine is affected or if you’ve had UC for an extended time.

Ulcerative Colitis Prognosis

For most people, colitis may be a chronic, or long-term, condition. You’ll have flares and periods with no symptoms in the least (your doctor will call this remission). A small number of individuals have one attack and are never troubled again.

A few people, about 10% of these with UC, have their first attack and quickly worsen, with serious complications. In many people, the disease spreads to the large intestine over time. This can become carcinoma, but about half the people that catch on survive if doctors catch the disease early enough and take away their colon.

If you are seeing the above mentioned symptoms, visit a Gastroenterologist near you immediately and get the proper treatment for Ulcerative Colitis. Dr. Chirayu Chokshi & team is an expert Gastroenterologist in Vadodara, Gujarat. For more information, visit our website or call us on 9081333897 / 9825795257 to book an appointment.

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