About Crohn's and Colitis
What are Crohn’s and colitis?
Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, sometimes referred to as IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), are diseases that inflame the lining of the GI (gastrointestinal) tract and disrupt the body’s ability to digest food, absorb nutrition and eliminate waste in a healthy manner. As a result, individuals living with Crohn’s or colitis may experience the following symptoms: abdominal pain, cramping, gas, bloating, nausea and vomiting, fatigue, diarrhea (possibly bloody), fever and diminished appetite and weight loss.
Crohn’s Disease: With Crohn’s disease, inflammation can occur anywhere in the GI tract but is usually present in the lower part of the small bowel and the colon. Patches of inflammation occur between healthy portions of the gut, and can penetrate the intestinal layers from inner to outer lining.
Ulcerative Colitis: Ulcerative colitis only affects portions of the large intestine, including the rectum and anus and typically only inflames the innermost lining of bowel tissue. It almost always starts at the rectum, extending upwards in a continuous manner through the colon. Ulcerative colitis can be controlled with medication and, in severe cases, can even “be cured” by surgically removing the entire large intestine.
Indeterminate Colitis: Indeterminate colitis is a term used when it is unclear if the inflammation is due to Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis.
Canada has one of the highest rates of Crohn's and colitis in the world with approximately 233,000 Canadians having IBD or 1 in every 150 Canadians.
About Crohn’s and Colitis Canada
Crohn’s and Colitis Canada is the only national, volunteer-based charity focused on finding the cures for Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis and improving the lives of children and adults affected by these diseases in Canada. We are one of the top two health charity funders of Crohn’s and colitis research in the world, investing over $88 million in research to date. We are transforming the lives of people affected by Crohn’s and colitis through research, patient programs, advocacy, and awareness. Visit crohnsandcolitis.ca to learn more.