Ulcerative Colitis: What It Is

Ulcerative Colitis: What It Is

Ulcerative colitis is when you have inflammation, irritation and/or ulcers in the lining of your colon.  This is not very common in the fact that there are less than 200,000 cases per year. There is no cure for ulcerative colitis. Though symptoms can be managed to where life can be manageable. 

People with ulcerative colitis may not experience symptoms everyday. There may be periods of time when symptoms go away for awhile before presenting again.

Ulcerative colitis is an immune deficiency disease.  It is when your immune system attacks, food, and good gut bacteria that lines your stomach. The food you eat and stress do not cause flare ups. No one knows the cause of ulcerative colitis, it could be genetic.  If you have someone in your family that suffers from ulcerative colitis you have a 30% greater chance of having it yourself. 

 

Symptoms

There are many symptoms that can be associated with ulcerative colitis.  The problem is some of these symptoms can be linked to other diseases as well.  Sometimes symptoms can flare up, but then go away for weeks, months or even years. 

The main symptom linked to ulcerative colitis is bloody diarrhea. You can also suffer from cramping, belly pain, urges to have a bowel movement, not feeling hungry, weight loss, fatigue, fever, dehydration, joint pain, canker sores, eye pain, anemia, skin sores, incontinence, and waking up in the middle of the night needing to go to the bathroom. 

You can have a few of these at a time you may not experience severe symptoms at all it all depends on your type of ulcerative colitis and the severity of your specific case. 

 

Types

There are different types of ulcerative colitis.

Ulcerative proctitis– is a mild form, found in the rectum and usually the only symptom is rectal bleeding. 

Proctosigmoiditis– is found in the rectum and lower part of the colon, symptoms can include bloody diarrhea, belly cramps, pain, feeling to have a bowel movement but can’t pass one. 

Left-sided colitis– is found in the rectum and up the left side of the colon, it can cause cramps on the left side of the belly, bloody diarrhea, loss of weight suddenly and inflammation. 

Pancolitis– affects the entire colon, symptoms are usually severe, with bloody diarrhea, belly cramps, pain, fatigue, weight loss.  

Acute severe ulcerative colitis–  this is a very rare form, that affects the entire colon, symptoms include severe pain, heavy diarrhea, beeding, and fever. 

 

Diagnosis