Crohn's Disease - All About Bowel Disease

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Crohn's Disease - All About Bowel Disease
Crohn's Disease - All About Bowel Disease

Video: Crohn's Disease - All About Bowel Disease

Video: Crohn's Disease - All About Bowel Disease
Video: Inflammatory Bowel Disease - Crohns and Ulcerative Colitits 2023, September

Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Causes & Symptoms

In the case of inflammatory bowel disease, the immune system reacts incorrectly, causing an excess of inflammation-promoting substances (cytokines, chemokines) to be released into the intestinal wall. As a result, inflammations develop in the intestines. The alternation between acute attacks and symptom-free phases is characteristic. The development of inflammatory bowel disease is difficult to prevent…


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Much is still unexplained about the development of inflammatory bowel disease. The influence of genetic components (family history) is clear. Among the environmental factors it is discussed that, for example, excessive hygiene in childhood increases the risk. Infections in the intestine may also have an impact.

The influence of cigarette smoking on the disease process is opposite in Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. While smoking increases the risk of Crohn's disease, the opposite is true for ulcerative colitis: Smoking lowers the risk of the disease. Another possible influencing factor being discussed is an appendix operation that has taken place.


Chronic inflammatory bowel disease is characterized by recurring phases of high disease activity (so-called relapses), followed by symptom-free phases (remission).

The two diseases differ in terms of the sections of the intestine that are affected by the inflammation. Crohn's disease (MC) can affect all areas of the digestive tract from mouth to anus. Various combinations of different inflammation sites are also possible. Frequently affected areas in Crohn's disease are the lower section of the small intestine (ileum) at the transition to the large intestine, the uppermost section of the small intestine (duodenum, duodenum), the entire small intestine and / or the large intestine, stomach and esophagus. In Crohn's disease, the inflammatory process extends deep into all layers of the intestinal wall (transmural).

In ulcerative colitis (CU), the inflammatory process is concentrated in the large intestine. The rectum, the left-sided descending large intestine, extensive parts of the large intestine or - less often - the entire large intestine can be affected. The inflammation is not as deep as in Crohn's disease and is mostly limited to the mucous membrane (mucosa and submucosa).

Typical complaints of inflammatory bowel disease:

  • Diarrhea, often bloody and slimy, possibly purulent in ulcerative colitis;
  • Abdominal pain, often spasmodic;
  • painful bowel movements (in ulcerative colitis);
  • general feeling of illness;
  • Weight loss;
  • Fever;
  • Anemia;
  • Stunted growth.


The development of inflammatory bowel disease is difficult to prevent. Only the influence of smoke in Crohn's disease is clear.