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 Crohn’s Disease Treatment in Orange County, CA

Crohn’s disease is a chronic condition that causes inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Unlike ulcerative colitis, it’s not isolated to one area, it can affect any part of the GI tract from the mouth down to the colon. However, it typically affects the end of the small bowel, called the ileum, and the beginning of the colon.

Crohn’s disease mostly affects adolescents and young adults, ages 15 to 35. An estimated 700,000 people in the U.S. Are affected by Crohn’s disease, which equals about 50% of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) cases. If you are experiencing symptoms of Crohn’s Disease it is important that you reach out to Dr. Albert Chung. Dr. Chung is a colorectal surgery specialist based in Santa Ana, CA, treating the greater Orange County area with expert-level colorectal care. Give our colorectal clinic a call at (714) 988-8690 today.

What Causes Crohn’s Disease?

The exact cause of Crohn’s disease isn’t well known, but many doctors believe it has a lot to do with family history and environmental factors. Things such as your diet and stress can aggravate or trigger Crohn’s disease, but never cause it in the first place.

According to Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America, “Crohn’s tends to run in families, so if you or a close relative have the disease, your family members have a significantly increased chance of developing Crohn’s. Studies have shown that 5% to 20% of affected individuals have a first–degree relative (parents, child, or sibling) with one of the diseases.”

Bacteria that aids in digestion, which is harmless to your body, resides in your GI tract. Normally, your immune system doesn’t bother these bacteria, but for people with IBD and Crohn’s disease, the immune system creates inflammation in the areas those bacteria reside as a natural response.

What Are the Symptoms of Crohn’s Disease?

Symptoms specific to GI tract inflammation include:

  • Abdominal cramps
  • Urgent bowel movements
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Night sweats

Sometimes, people with Crohn’s disease may not experience any symptoms, but they can be triggered by specific foods. While digestive issues can be a symptom of numerous GI problems, talk to your doctor if specific foods give you these symptoms, as it may be a sign of Crohn’s disease.

How is Crohn’s Disease Treated?

Medication

This is the primary form of immediate treatment for Crohn’s disease. Medications won’t cure Crohn’s disease, but the goal is to suppress it. As symptoms are suppressed, it allows time for your GI tract tissue to heal properly from any damage done to the lining which ultimately will increase the time between flare-ups.

Nutrition

An easy way to control flare-ups and triggers is to change your diet and nutritional intake. You will be given advice on what foods to avoid, and which to eat.

Surgery

Surgery is only necessary if medicine and diet changes can’t control flare-ups. However, nearly 70% of people with Crohn’s disease end up needing surgery at some point in their life. This is because Crohn’s disease can lead to the creation of a fissure, fistula, or some intestinal obstruction. A portion of the affected area may also need to be removed, which is called a resection.

Schedule a Crohn’s Disease Consultation

Board-certified proctologist Dr. Albert Chung provides compassionate care for patients suffering from Crohn’s Disease in Santa Ana, CA. Dr. Chung will take the time to provide you with a comprehensive diagnosis and answer any questions you may have about Crohn’s Disease and your available treatment options. If you are concerned about or experiencing issues related to Crohn’s disease, call Dr. Chung at (714) 988-8690.