Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis (Colitis ulcerosa, UC) is a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Ulcerative colitis is a form of colitis, a disease of the colon (large intestine), that includes characteristic ulcers, or open sores. The main symptom of active disease is usually constant diarrhea mixed with blood, of gradual onset. IBD is often confused with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a troublesome, but much less serious, condition.

Ulcerative colitis has similarities to Crohn's disease, another form of IBD. Ulcerative colitis is an intermittent disease, with periods of exacerbated symptoms, and periods that are relatively symptom-free. Although the symptoms of ulcerative colitis can sometimes diminish on their own, the disease usually requires treatment to go into remission. Ulcerative colitis occurs in 35–100 people for every 100,000 in the United States, or less than 0.1% of the population.

The disease is more prevalent in northern countries of the world, as well as in northern areas of individual countries or other regions. Rates tend to be higher in more affluent countries,which may indicate the increased prevalence is due to increased rates of diagnosis. Although ulcerative colitis has no known cause, there is a presumed genetic component to susceptibility. The disease may be triggered in a susceptible person by environmental factors. Although dietary modification may reduce the discomfort of a person with the disease, ulcerative colitis is not thought to be caused by dietary factors.

Ulcerative colitis is treated as an autoimmune disease. Treatment is with anti-inflammatory drugs, immunosuppression, and biological therapy targeting specific components of the immune response. Colectomy (partial or total removal of the large bowel through surgery) is occasionally necessary, but is not a cure for the disease.

Read more about Ulcerative ColitisSigns and Symptoms, Causes, Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, Management, Prognosis, Epidemiology, Research

Other articles related to "ulcerative colitis, colitis":

Ulcerative Colitis - Research
... Iowa to show benefit in patients with ulcerative colitis ... white cell response in the diseased areas, which is somewhat paradoxical given that ulcerative colitis immunology was thought to classically involve Th2 ... has been observed within the inflamed intestinal mucosa of ulcerative colitis sufferers, where ICAM-1 over production correlated with disease activity ...
Anti-saccharomyces Cerevisiae Antibodies
... antibodies (pANCA), are among the two most useful and often discriminating markers for colitis ... disease more frequently, whereas pANCA tend to recognize ulcerative colitis ... Celiac disease Colitis Ulcerative colitis-familial ...
Crohn's Disease - Signs and Symptoms - Gastrointestinal
... of tissue involvement, initial symptoms can be more subtle than those of ulcerative colitis ... Colitis may result in a smaller volume of feces of higher frequency ... less common in Crohn's disease than in ulcerative colitis, but may be seen in the setting of Crohn's colitis ...
Crohn's & Colitis Foundation Of America - About Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
... Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are painful, medically incurable diseases that attack the digestive system ... Crohn's disease may attack anywhere from the mouth to the anus, while ulcerative colitis inflames only the large intestine (colon) ...
Descending Colon
... Among the most common are ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, and colon cancer ... Ulcerative colitis can affect any part of the colon, but when it affects the descending colon, it is called left-sided colitis ... Symptoms of ulcerative colitis include diarrhea, bleeding, fever, abdominal pain, too much mucus in fecal material, and appetite and weight loss ...