Ulcerative colitis is defined as chronic inflammation of the lining of the large intestine. An individual with the condition have miniature ulcers and abscesses in the colon and rectum that manifest infrequently and result to blood-streaked stool as well as diarrhea.
There are discontinuous stages of flare-ups and remission where the disease seems to have settled. The remission period can last from weeks to years. The inflammation starts in the rectum and radiates to other regions of the colon.
What are the signs?
The characteristic sign of ulcerative colitis is diarrhea which is often streaked with blood. In some instances, the symptoms of the condition include:
- Severe blood-streaked diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
Other signs that might be present include aching, urgent bowel movements or the presence of pus or blood in the stool.
Management of ulcerative colitis
The treatment for ulcerative colitis include medications, dietary adjustments and/or surgical intervention.
Even though it could not be cured, these treatment options can help an individual with the condition continue a normal life.
It is vital to start treatment once symptoms arise. If the individual suffers from serious diarrhea as well as bleeding, admission in a healthcare facility is needed to avert or deal with dehydration, lessen the symptoms and guarantee that proper nutrition is provided.
- Medications – various medications might be given such as corticosteroids, 5-aminosalicylic drugs, antibiotics and immunosuppressive agents.
- Nutrition – for minor to moderate cases, a diet packed with proteins and calories and has reduced fiber is suggested
- Surgery – if drugs are not effective or serious complications developed, surgical intervention is necessary where the entire colon is removed