Crohn’s disease can cause people severe abdominal pain that requires emergency care on a regular basis. Pain, fatigue, diarrhea, and a lack of nutrients can make it difficult for people with Crohn’s to work and live freely. But if managed appropriately, patients can live healthy, normal lives. This starts by knowing more about Crohn’s disease and how to treat it.
What Causes Crohn’s Disease?
Like many diseases, the precise cause for Crohn’s disease isn’t known. However, doctors suspect that it may result from a malfunctioning immune system. When a virus or bacteria invades the body, the immune system triggers an abnormal response that attacks the cells of the digestive system. Evidence also shows that Crohn’s is more common in people who have family members with the disease. Risk factors include:
- Age: Most patients are diagnosed before age 30.
- Ethnicity: Whites are at a higher risk than other ethnicities.
- Family history: You have a higher risk of developing Crohn’s if you have a mother, father, or sibling with Crohn’s.
- Smoking: Smoking cigarettes increases your risk for the disease.
- Where You Live: People who live in industrialized countries or urban areas are at a higher risk of Crohn’s.
Is There a Cure for Crohn’s Disease?
Although there is no cure for Crohn’s disease, proper care and treatment can help manage the disease. Treatment may include bowel rest, surgery, and medications to decrease flare-ups of intestinal inflammation. You may also work with a nutritionist that can help optimize the amount of nutrients your body absorbs.
When Should I See a Doctor?
Crohn’s can involve frightening symptoms. Don’t hesitate to go to the ER if you have a fever, blood in your stool, or bouts of diarrhea that fail to respond to over-the-counter medications.
Looking for the closest ER in Galveston? Walk into Hospitality Health ER at 4222 Seawall Blvd. in Galveston Island.