The primary goal for Crohn's Disease treatment is to control inflammation
in the digestive system. Because most of the symptoms are a result of
the swelling, most of the negative effects of the disease will cease when
inflammation is reduced. Treatment may include medication therapy, or in
extreme cases, surgery. Medication to treat Crohn's disease falls
into one of four categories: anti-inflammatory drugs, immune system
suppressors, antibiotics, and symptom relief drugs.
Anti-inflammatory medications, such as Sulfasalazine, Mesalamine, and
Corticosteroids, are usually the first step in treating Crohn's Disease.
Sulfasalazine is very effective; however, it has severe side effects,
such as nausea, vomiting, and headaches. Mesalamine, on the other hand,
has fewer side effects but has been used for considerably less time.
Corticosteroids are a common treatment for a myriad of disorders.
However, they are less effective in Crohn's Disease and have serious side
effects. Because Crohn's Disease is caused by an exaggerated
response of your immune system, immune suppressors are often an effective
form of treatment. Azathioprine and mercaptopurine are the most common
forms used to treat IBD. Unfortunately, many of these medications cause
very negative side effects, such as liver damage, high blood pressure,
cancer and increased risk of infection. Antibiotics are typically
used to reduce infection and to heal fistulas and abscesses. These, too,
have potential side effects; however, in the case of infection, treatment
is necessary to avoid progression. Symptom relief medications are
often necessary as the effects of Crohn's Disease are so severe. Anti-
diarrheals, laxatives, pain relievers, iron supplements, and nutritional
supplements may make Crohn's more bearable for sufferers. Due to
excessive diarrhea, medication is often necessary to avoid dehydration
and to improve the quality of life in general. On the other hand,
inflammation may cause constipation also; so laxatives may be used to
promote bowel movements. Abdominal pain is a common complaint among
those with IBD; however, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as
ibuprofen and aspirin, should not be used to treat Crohn's. Nutritional
and iron supplements may be used to replenish lacking vitamins and
minerals to your system. Surgery is sometimes required in severe
cases of Crohn's. It may be necessary to remove diseased portions of
your digestive tract, or simply to close fistulas and drain abscesses.
However, surgery is usually only used as a last resort after other
treatment methods have been ineffective. Crohn's Disease can not
be cured; however, with many of these treatment methods, relief may be
available from the disease. Sarah is an acclaimed writer on
medical matters, and has written extensively on the subjects of Attention
Deficit Disorder, Bird Flu and Cohn's Disease. For more of her articles,
go to http://www.imedicalvillage.com now.
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