Alternate Names : Regional Enteritis
What are the treatments for the disease?
Medications used to treat Crohn's disease include the following:
aminosalicylates, such as sulfasalazine and mesalamine
corticosteroids, such as prednisone and methylprednisolone
medications that alter the body's immune response, such as azathioprine,
6MP, and methotrexate
antibiotics, such as metronidazole, ampicillin, and ciprofloxacin, for
Some persons need extra vitamins, minerals, and salts. A healthy diet is
essential for maintaining body weight. A soft, bland diet may be better
tolerated than a diet with spicy foods. Milk products may be restricted if the
person has lactose
intolerance. In severe cases, a person may need to be fed through
an intravenous tube to improve his or her nutritional status.
Seventy percent of the people with Crohn's disease will have surgery at least
once. A recent study showed that the surgery significantly improves the quality
of life in individuals with Crohn's disease. Surgery may be done for one or
more of the following effects of the disorder:
A section of the intestines that is severely damaged or obstructed may be
removed with a procedure called a resection and anastamosis. The damaged
portion is cut out, and the bowel is sewn back together.
If the rectum is diseased, an
ileostomy may be done. This procedure involves taking a portion of
the bowel to the outside through a hole in the abdomen and attaching a
An incision and drainage may be done to drain abscesses, or pus pockets,
near the rectum.
A fistula repair may be done to close abnormal openings caused by the
What are the side effects of the treatments?
Many of the medications used to treat Crohn's disease can cause stomach upset,
allergic reactions, and an increased susceptibility to infection. Persons
taking metronidazole may have severe vomiting and abdominal pain if they drink
alcohol. Surgery may
cause bleeding, infection, or allergic reaction to anesthesia.
What happens after treatment for the disease?
Crohn's disease is a long-term disease with occasional flare-ups. There can be
periods without any symptoms. However, the symptoms usually reappear.
How is the disease monitored?
There is no specific test for monitoring Crohn's disease. Affected persons need
to monitor their symptoms carefully. Any new or worsening symptoms should be
reported to the healthcare provider.