Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a severe, chronic inflammatory bowel disease . It causes: Inflammation Ulcers Bleeding in the lining of the colon and rectum ...
Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a type of severe, chronic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which causes:
- Bleeding in the lining of the colon and rectum
Ulcerative ColitisCopyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
The exact cause is unknown. A virus or bacteria may cause the immune system to overreact and damage the colon and rectum.
Having a family member with IBD (includes UC and Crohn's disease) may increase your risk of developing UC.
Symptoms may include:
- Abdominal cramps and pain
- Rectal bleeding
- Weight loss
- Fatigue, weakness
Treatment options may include:Dietary Changes
Your doctor may recommend that you avoid certain foods that trigger symptoms, such as:
- Dairy foods (due to lactose intolerance)
- Highly seasoned foods
- High-fiber foods
Talk to your doctor to learn more about the types of foods that you should avoid.Medications
There are a range of medicines that may be prescribed, such as:
- Aminosalicylate medicines (such as, sulfasalazine, mesalamine, olsalazine, balsalazide disodium)
- Steroid anti-inflammatory medicines (such as, prednisone, methylprednisolone, budesonide)
- Immune modifier medicines (such as, azathioprine, 6-mercaptopurine, cyclosporine)
- Biological agents (such as, infliximab, adalimumab)
Medicine may not cure very severe UC. In some cases, your doctor may suggest surgery. This can involve having all or part of the colon removed. Surgery may also be done because UC increases your risk of colon cancer.
Over time, colitis that is not treated or that does not respond to treatment can lead to:
If you are diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, follow your doctor's instructions.
There are no guidelines for preventing this condition.