Filed under: General health. Tagged as: General health.
Crohn’s disease, which is also an inflammatory disorder of the lower bowel, may be mistaken for it at times.
Although nervous factors were once thought to be a cause of this complaint, it is now accepted that the associated anxiety and depression may follow the disease rather than cause it.
In treatment, a diet high in residue and low or absent in milk is helpful. While no specific medical treatment can give cure, control of the disease is usually possible. As in the other inflammatory disorders, cortisone is a non-specific treatment which reduces and usually controls the inflammation.
A sulpha drug, sulphasalazine, helps to control the disease but not because of its antibiotic action. Exactly how is uncertain. Immunosuppressive drugs have been used in some cases and have proved of benefit.
If large doses of cortisone are needed to control the disease, surgery seems to offer more advantages. Surgical management seems to control the joint problems as well as the bowel inflammation.
In most cases, the whole of the large bowel, including the rectum, are removed and the last part of the small bowel, the ileum, is opened out on to the abdominal wall and a bag is worn to collect the discharge.
In about 5 per cent of cases the rectum is not involved and then the anal sphincter may be preserved, so no external opening is required, the ileum being joined to lower rectum.