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Doctor insights on: Difference Between Crohn's Disease And Ulcerative Colitis

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How do you tell the difference between ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease?

How do you tell the difference between ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease?

Location for one: It can be difficult to tell between the 2 at times. Location is important. Ulcerative colitis always involves the colon starting with the rectum. Crohns can follow any distribution in the gut and often involves the small intestine, especially the terminal ileum. There are also differences when tissue specimens are viewed under the microscope. There are blood tests which can be helpful too. ...Read more

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Dr. Abby Caplin
751 doctors shared insights

Crohn's Disease (Definition)

Inflammatory bowel disease, also known as IBD, is chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. There are two main types of IBD: ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Ulcerative colitis causes continuous inflammation and ulcers in the innermost lining of the colon and the rectum. Crohn's, on the other hand, is non-continuous inflammation that affects all layers of the digestive system in the large and small intestines. Both ulcerative colitis and Crohn's cause diarrhea, pain, ...Read more


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What is the disparity between Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

What is the disparity between Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

Unclear question: If by disparity you mean "the difference between" then: ulcerative colitis affects just the large intestine(colon) and causes bloody diarrhea and abdominal pain. The inflammation is superficial on the bowel lining. Crohns causes deep inflammation through the whole bowel wall and affects anywhere in the GI tract from lips to anus.Symptoms of crohns can be more severe and can cause bowel obstruction. ...Read more

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What are symptoms of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

What are symptoms of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

Many possibilities: There are many potential symptoms: weight loss, diarrhea, abdominal pain, vomiting, iron deficiency, fatigue, blood in the stool, arthritis, fever. Any of these could be symptoms. Its a tricky disease unfortunately. ...Read more

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What are the causes of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

What are the causes of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis?

Genes+environment : A combination of genetic predisposion (for example crohn's is more common in ashkenazi jews), life events (eg appendectomy increases one and decreases the other), and environmental influences (eg smoking increases crohn's and decreases severity of uc...). Bet you didn't expect the latter! as knowledge increases more precise factors are identified. ...Read more

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Many people in my support forum insist they are suffering from Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. I know it's possible, but how likely is it?

Many people in my support forum insist they are suffering from Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. I know it's possible, but how likely is it?

Very possible : When people are posting on specialize forums for specific diseases, they are looking for answers. So often they find comfort in knowing that there is a community of people who have the same conditions, and are who are suffering likewise. So that they can support each other, share treatment plans that has worked, share treatment plants that haven't worked, and keep informed of the latest treatments. ...Read more

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Are ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease hereditary?

Somewhat: There are numerous families where there are children and /or grandchildren, cousins, etc. With these diseases. If both parents have ibd, the incidence is around 50% in the kids. Otherwise about 20% of patients will have a first degree relative with ibd. So you do the math! it isn't exactly hereditary, but there a familial incedence. By the way, the kids of colitis patients often have crohn's. ...Read more

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Which is a more serious disease: Crohn's or ulcerative colitis?

Which is a more serious disease: Crohn's or ulcerative colitis?

UC: Question as to which is more serious, Crohn's or Ulcerative Colitis, misses the point that these are different intensities of disorder along a spectrum of manifestation wherein intestinal smooth muscle function is hyperdynamic due to neurologic autonomic system impingement & over-stimulation. Ulcerative Colitis represents greater intensity of these dysfunctions; involving inflammation & bleeding. ...Read more

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I had ulcerative colitis, but now i'm worried that i might have Crohn's disease. What do I do?

Colitis: These two forms of GI disease can sometimes have overlap but also have many areas that they are different. Best to discuss with your GI md and or surgeon to help differentiate and sometimes a repeat colonoscopy or upper endoscopy may be needed along with other test to establish a firm diagnosis. ...Read more

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What to do if I had ulcerative colitis, but now I'm worried that I might have Crohn's disease.?

Takes time: It is actually rather common for UC patients to find out they actually have crohns. Maybe up to 10% have this problem. This takes time--maybe even years to fully sort out for some. Many of the medications are useful in both so this is usually not the main issue. Surgical options are different however. Keep having regular discussions with your GI doctor about this ...Read more

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Diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, but now i'm worried that i might have Crohn's disease, can't that happen?

Unlikely: Cd can affect any portion of the GI tract from mouth to anus, uc only affects the rectum and large intestine. Cd can extend through the full thickness of the tract lining - creating holes, infection, or connections to adjacent organs, uc is limited to the lining of the colon. Differentiating can be tough when the rectum and colon are affected by cd. A gastroenterologist should be able to help. ...Read more

Dr. Jonah Essers
524 doctors shared insights

Ulcerative Colitis (Definition)

Ulcerative colitis (ul-sur-uh-tiv koe-lie-tis) is an inflammatory bowel disease (ibd) that causes long-lasting inflammation in part of your digestive tract. Ulcerative colitis usually affects only the innermost lining of your large intestine (colon) and rectum.There's no known cure for ulcerative colitis, but therapies are available that may dramatically reduce the signs ...Read more


Dr. Scott Bolhack
2,050 doctors shared insights

Ulcer (Definition)

An ulcer is a discontinuity or a break in a body membrane that impedes the normal functioning of the organ of which that membrane is a part. Ulcers are further classified by their location. Ulcers are usually caused by infections, excessive acid production, stress, ...Read more