Facts about the disease.
Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis are the two main types of Inflammatory Bowel Disease. There are other less well-known types of IBD too. IBD are often confused with Irritable Bowel Syndrome however these conditions are not the same, though they share some symptoms. The cause or causes of IBD have not yet been identified.
Some facts about Crohn’s and Colitis.
Together, UC and Crohn’s Disease affect about 1 person in every 250 in the UK population.
Ulcerative Colitis (UC) and Crohn’s Disease are chronic (ongoing) conditions, which are not infectious.
The most common age for diagnosis is between 10 and 40. In both UC and Crohn’s there is a higher chance of developing either illness if you have a close relative who has the condition.
In 10-15% of cases, UC and Crohn’s may be difficult to distinguish.
Men and women suffer equally.
What is it?
If affects the rectum and sometimes the colon (large intestine). Inflammation and many tiny ulcers develop on the inside lining of the colon resulting in urgent and bloody diarrhoea, pain and continual tiredness. In addition, UC can cause inflammation in the eyes, skin and joins. If the inflammation is only in the rectum it is known as proctitis.
It can affect anywhere from the mouth to the anus but most commonly it affects the small intestine and/or colon. It cases inflammation, deep ulcers and scarring to the wall of the intestine and often occurs in patches. The main symptoms are pain the in abdomen, urgent diarrhoea, general tiredness and loss of weight. Crohn’s is sometimes associated with other inflammatory conditions affecting joints, skin and eyes.