Ulcerative Colitis: An Overview

It is always adviseable to go to your doctor about any serious medical condition, such as ulcerative colitis, but I will try to answer a few of the most popular questions here, in this article. Ulcerative colitis is not a subject that many people enjoy discussing over dinner or coffee, and many patients who suffer from this disorder are in the dark as to the causes and treatment options. It can be difficult to discuss ulcerative colitis even with a doctor because it is such a sensitive issue.

Ulcerative colitis is one of the many types of inflammatory bowel disease. Patients diagnosed with ulcerative colitis may suffer from a partial or fully inflamed colon, painful sores on the inner walls of the colon, and bloody stool. Many times, ulcerative colitis is present but remains all but dormant for several years before the symptoms actually begin to flare.

It is unknown at this point exactly what causes ulcerative colitis, though it is thought to stem from immune system deficiencies. Ulcerative colitis involves the colon, the large intestine, the rectum and sometimes the small intestine, and pain can be experienced in any of these areas. Many dieticians also believe that poor nutrition is to blame. When a patient experiences diarrhea, many valuable nutrients are lost, and the ulcerative colitis will invariably worsen.

Patients diagnosed with ulcerative colitis have a variety of treatment options, depending upon the intensity of the disease. Surgery is the most extreme option, and involves removal of the affected areas of the colon. This is the only cure for ulcerative colitis, but should be avoided if possible because it can lead to other diseases and disorders.

A doctor can prescribe a diet that will help to control “flare-ups” of ulcerative colitis, and will include foods that are not irritating to the bowels or urinary tract. Medications and herbal remedies are also options, but will not cure the disease. Patients who experience chronic ulcerative colitis may be asked to keep a journal in which they will record the foods they eat and the occurances of any and all symptoms. This will help a doctor to determine the most effective course of treatment.

Certain vitamins, herbs and spices can be taken, and are even recommended by nutritionists and medical professionals. A daily multi-vitamin may be sufficient, but more concentrated doses of Vitamins B12 and D are most effective. Eating a diet rich in fish and lean meats is advised for patients who suffer from ulcerative colitis, and daily doses of botanical aloe may help to reduce inflamation of the colon.

If you are worried that you might have ulcerative colitis, or another inflammatory bowel disease, it is important to consult with your doctor as soon as possible to determine a method of treatment that will reduce pain and hopefully alleviate all symptoms.


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