I have chosen to write my Unit 3 assignment topic on Crohn’s disease, which is also known as Crohn syndrome and regional enteritis, is a form of autoimmune inflammatory bowel disease. Crohn’s disease gets its name and was first discovered by Dr. Burrill B. Crohn in 1932, it is known to possibly have affected as many as 700,000 Americans. This disease can affect any area of the gastrointestinal tract between the mouths to the anus and is caused by a combination of environmental, immune and bacterial factors.
With Crohn’s disease the body’s immune system attacks the gastrointestinal tract believed to be directed towards microbial antigens of the body. Although the cause of Crohn’s is uncertain it may be an immunodeficiency state but, it does not appear to be an autoimmune disease. Crohn’s can affect anyone male or female equally at any age most common among adolescents and young adults between the ages of 15 and 35 but, may be genetic related with more than 70 genes found to be involved. Patients with Crohn’s disease have a slightly reduced life expectancy.
Symptoms of Crohn’s disease consist of Persistent Diarrhea Rectal bleeding Urgent need to move bowels Abdominal cramps Sensation of incomplete evacuation Constipation (known to cause bowel obstruction) Other symptoms also related to Crohn’s disease consist of Fever Loss of appetite Weight Loss Fatigue Night Sweats Loss of normal menstrual cycle While there is no exact known cause of Crohn’s disease improper diet and stress may aggravate the disease. Recent research results suggest hereditary, genetics, and or environmental factors may also contribute to the development of the disease.
In most cases the gastrointestinal tract or GI tract contains bacteria many of which assist in the body’s digestion process that are harmless to the bodily system. In most cases our body’s immune system will attack and kill unknown antigens such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, or other microorganisms while the harmless bacteria found within the intestines stay protected from these attacks. Crohn’s disease can often be challenging to properly diagnose even with a number of tests that are often required.
One of the most common test conducted with diagnosing the disease is a colonoscopy which is approximately 70% effective in diagnoses while other tests are less effective. There’s no cure for Crohn’s disease and remission may not be possible or prolonged in cases, but where remission is possible relapse can be prevented and symptoms may be controlled with use of properly assigned medications, lifestyle and dietary or eating habits, reducing stress, moderate activity and exercise. As long as the disease is properly controlled in most cases Crohn’s will not restrict daily living or activities.
The following medications are used to treat Crohn’s disease include 5-aminosalicylic acid formulations, prednisone, immunomodulators such as azathioprine (6-mercaptopurine), methotrexate, infliximab, adalimumab, certolizumab, and natalizumab. 1 / 2 Hydrocortisone may also be used but is only suggested in severe cases. As an effect of Crohn’s disease an excessive amount of blood may be lost from the GI tract as well as chronic inflammation that often lead to anemia in patients which may cause the patient to need iron supplements as well.
Other treatments, such as blood transfusion for those who are cardiovascularly unstable and surgery for those who have partial or full blockage of the intestine, may also be used but are not a cure for Crohn’s. References “Crohn’s disease” – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Crohn%27s_disease“Crohn’s Disease Center: Symptoms, Types, Causes, Tests, and Treatments” – http://www. webmd. com/ibd-crohns-disease/crohns- disease/“CCFA: What is Crohn’s Disease | Causes of Crohn’s” – http://www. ccfa. org/what-are- crohns-and-colitis/what-is-crohns-disease/“Descriptions of Diseases | AARDA”.