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Crohn's Disease Forum » Treatment » What is crohns?


11-28-2007, 10:22 PM   #1
Samantha22
 
what is crohns?

I just got diagnosised and all of the research that I have done doesn't really give me that much information. I have ulcers all over my illeum and my intestines are really inflammed. I am on Pred. 40 mg once daily for one week and 20 mg once a day for a week then back to the Dr. Pentasa 1000 mg four times a day. I just don't know what to ask for when I go to the doctor or what to expect or to know when the inflammation is down or up or when I am having flare ups. I just don't what to expect long term. Thanks, Samantha
11-29-2007, 01:02 PM   #2
DanSJVDavis
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Well, CCFA.org is always a good place for information. You might download some of their brochures on Crohn's: http://www.ccfa.org/info/brochures/?LMI=3.4
They've got pretty good info in 'em. I was given some brochures by my doctor that helped me when I was first diagnosed back sometime around '86 or so.

CCFA also had one of the better explanations about Crohn's I'd read:
http://www.ccfa.org/info/about/crohns

Taken from CCFA
Crohn's disease is a chronic (ongoing) disorder that causes inflammation of the digestive or gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Although it can involve any area of the GI tract from the mouth to the anus, it most commonly affects the small intestine and/or colon.

The disease is named after Dr. Burrill B. Crohn. In 1932, Dr. Crohn and two colleagues, Dr. Leon Ginzburg and Dr. Gordon D. Oppenheimer, published a landmark paper describing the features of what is known today as Crohn's disease. Crohn's and a related disease, ulcerative colitis, are the two main disease categories that belong to a larger group of illnesses called inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Because the symptoms of these two illnesses are so similar, it is sometimes difficult to establish the diagnosis definitively. In fact, approximately 10 percent of colitis cases are unable to be pinpointed as either ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease and are called indeterminate colitis.

Both illnesses do have one strong feature in common. They are marked by an abnormal response by the body's immune system. The immune system is composed of various cells and proteins. Normally, these protect the body from infection. In people with Crohn's disease, however, the immune system reacts inappropriately. Researchers believe that the immune system mistakes microbes, such as bacteria that is normally found in the intestines, for foreign or invading substances, and launches an attack. In the process, the body sends white blood cells into the lining of the intestines, where they produce chronic inflammation. These cells then generate harmful products that ultimately lead to ulcerations and bowel injury. When this happens, the patient experiences the symptoms of IBD.

Although Crohn's disease most commonly affects the end of the small intestine (the ileum) and the beginning of the large intestine (the colon), it may involve any part of the GI tract. In ulcerative colitis, on the other hand, the GI involvement is limited to the colon. In Crohn's disease, all layers of the intestine may be involved, and there can be normal healthy bowel in between patches of diseased bowel. In contrast, ulcerative colitis affects only the superficial layers (the mucosa) of the colon in a more even and continuous distribution, which starts at the level of the anus.

Though there isn't a cure for it there are meds that can put the disease into remission and allow you to live a pretty normal life as long as you take your prescription and watch what you eat.

Though it is something you need to keep in mind as far as some lifestyle and nutrition changes go, it's not the end of the world and things will get better. Keep positive, learn all you can about it, keep yourself a food journal of the foods that cause you more problems than others, learn to slow down when you body tells you to and keep coming here for questions and support.

Welcome.
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11-29-2007, 01:40 PM   #3
Jeff D.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Welcome to the forums. Crohn's is what Dan said in the post above. It also brings depression so don't be afraid if you feel depression symptoms and if you do then go to the doctor. It is a long hard journey that you have ahead of you. Don't be afraid to try anything new as far as food and probiotics or anything like that just ask your doctor ahead of time. Also ask if you can get on an exercise plan and go through with it. It may cause pain at first but should help you out in the long run.
11-29-2007, 04:34 PM   #4
Jvstin
 
what is crohns?
it's a combination of Nancy Grace and sauerkraut.
11-29-2007, 06:57 PM   #5
Kev
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Halifax, NS, Canada

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how's this for a tongue in cheek answer.. Crohn's is one kick ass disease...

OK, kidding aside. Welcome to the forum. Congratulations on the diagnosis. A lot of folks with this are nearly driven insane by doc after doc who dismisses or mis diagnoses this. This way, you are learning what you have, hopefully your doctors know what you have AND the best way to treat it. Feel free to ask questions, rant, vent, get and offer advice, you may even feel like tossing out the occasional joke. just don't top mine, OK?
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KEV

Dx'd July, 2006
Meds: Flagyl, Cipro, Pred, AZA.. to no effect
Low Dose Naltrexone Nov 2007 - May 2014
Remicade June 17th, 2014
11-29-2007, 08:56 PM   #6
Jvstin
 
joking really is the best med for crohns. with it being a poop filled disease and all, you gotta have humour with it.
okay, so I lied about that being the best med, there are several meds that are better than joking, but I'm not gonna list them cause they aren't funny.
WELCOME!
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