Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease that affects the lining of the colon and the rectum. Patients who suffer from ulcerative colitis suffer from abdominal pain and cramping, diarrhea, blood and pus in the stools, abdominal sounds of gurgling or splashing, fever and weight loss. In more severe cases, patients may experience joint pain and swelling, mouth sores, vomiting, skin lumps or gastrointestinal bleeding.
Ulcerative colitis can affect people of any age group, but there are usually heights between ages 15-30 and 50-70. Children who suffer from ulcerative colitis may experience a slowing in growth.
Because ulcerative colitis mainly affects the large intestine, or the colon, a colonoscopy and a biopsy is the general procedure used to diagnose the disease. This can also help detect if the ulcerative colitis has progressed into colon cancer.
Reducing stress and improving diet and nutrition can help control attacks from ulcerative colitis, prevent repeated attacks and help the colon heal. For more severe or chronic cases, or if you fear you have a progressing case of ulcerative colitis, it is best to call and schedule and appointment with Dr. Saracino to discuss whether medication or surgery may be necessary in order for the colon to heal properly.