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Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that usually involves the lower part of the small intestine, though it may involve any part of gastrointestinal tract. It ordinarily affects people between the ages of 15 and 35, but young children also can suffer from it. Symptoms may include abdominal pain, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, weight loss, fever, joint pain and rashes. In children, it can cause developmental delay and failure to grow.

It is unclear what causes Crohn’s disease. It affects males and females equally. It does tend to run in some families. It is also true that most people with Crohn’s disease have irregularities in their immune system, though it is not known if this is a cause or effect of the condition.

At the IBD Center, we offer state-of-the-art diagnostic services to determine if your child has Crohn’s disease. In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, these services may include blood tests, stool cultures, endoscopies, biopsies, barium swallows and colonoscopies.

Though there is no cure for Crohn’s disease, we offer multidisciplinary therapeutic services that can help manage symptoms and improve your child’s quality of life. These may include a personalized pharmacotherapy plan, surgery or an appointment with a nutritionist to set up a diet plan. These services may also include meetings with psychologists and social workers to help with any social and emotional problems that may be caused by Crohn’s disease.

Because symptoms are similar, Crohn’s disease can sometimes be confused with ulcerative colitis. However, ulcerative colitis can only affect the large intestine, or colon, and it affects the intestines in slightly different ways.