Crohn's disease: what is it?
0.005-0.015% of the population is diagnosed veryA dangerous and unpleasant problem is Crohn's disease, or terminal ileitis. It appears in a fairly young age - 15-35 years. Very often this problem returns after the end of treatment. Let's find out what causes Crohn's disease, what it is and how to diagnose it.
Crohn's disease is called a chronic diseasegastrointestinal tract, which is characterized by the appearance of nodules (granulomas) on its walls. It is dangerous in that it affects all three shells of the organ and leads to disruption of the whole organism. It is most often localized in the small intestine, although inflammation of the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and large intestines is possible.
Despite the progress of science, the exact answer to theThe question is why there is Crohn's disease-no. It is assumed that it has a genetic predisposition, because many patients have similar cases in the family, especially among brothers or twins. The defect of which gene leads to this pathology - scientists have not yet discovered.
The bacterial and viral nature of the disease is also in doubt, although in an experiment in rodents Crohn's disease is caused by the introduction of washings from the intestines of patients.
There are prerequisites that this pathology is an autoimmune process, that is, the reason lies in the inadequate response of the immune system to its own cells in the digestive tract.
The first signs of the disease can easily be confused withhundreds of others, because it is loss of appetite, weight loss, weakness, increased fatigue. More specific symptoms are feces with mucus or blood, bloating, diarrhea, vomiting, pain in the area of the gastrointestinal tract.
But Crohn's disease affects not only organsdigestive system, but also causes inflammation of the joints, various membranes of the eye, gall bladder, kidneys, bladder, the development of ulcers in the mouth. In addition, the risk of carcinoma growth in the large intestine increases.
The main types of disease
The disease most often affects some specific areas of the intestine. Depending on the affected area, several types of Crohn's disease are distinguished:
- ileolitis is the most common form of the disease, in which the smallest intestine, the iliac, and the large intestine are affected;
- ileitis - in this case only the ileum is involved;
- gastro-duodenal form - it is spoken of in the twin lesions of the stomach and 12-colon;
- Ejinoileitis - lean and ulcerous intestines inflame;
- Crohn's disease of the colon - as is clear from the name, the work of the colon is disrupted.
Crohn's disease. Diagnostics
But to establish the diagnosis of symptoms is not enough. It is necessary to carry out complex diagnostics, which includes analysis of feces, blood, endoscopy and intestinal biopsy, colonoscopy, X-ray, MRI.
On the analysis of blood, the doctor may suspect the presence ofinflammation and malabsorption, which will be confirmed by the analysis of stool. It contains a large number of protective cells - leukocytes, as well as undigested food residues. You may be advised to undergo a test for the level of a specific protein of calprotectin. His level is high for ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease.
On the x-ray with a contrast agent you can seeswelling of the intestine, the presence of deep ulcers, narrowing. And endoscopy with biopsy and colonoscopy provide a histological confirmation of the diagnosis. MRI of the intestine is very informative, but in Russia it is not widely spread, as it requires a special technique of conducting.
On the problems associated with the gastrointestinal tract, see the section Gastrointestinal problems.
If you are interested in other diseases, look for them in the Diseases section.