Crohn's disease is a lifelong inflammatory bowel disease. Parts of the digestive tract get swollen and irritated. The tract may have deep sores called ulcers.
Crohn's disease usually occurs in the last part of the small intestine and the first part of the large intestine. But it can occur anywhere from the mouth to the rectum and anus.
The main symptoms of Crohn's disease are belly pain, diarrhea, fever, and weight loss. Some people may have constipation. Crohn's disease also sometimes causes problems with the joints, eyes, or skin. Your child's symptoms may be mild at some times and severe at others.
The disease can also go into remission. This means it is not active and there are no symptoms.
Bad attacks often have to be treated in the hospital. There your child can get medicines and liquids through a tube in a vein, called an IV. This gives the digestive system time to rest and recover.
Talk with your doctor about the best treatments. Treatments include:
Learning good self-care can help your child reduce symptoms and manage Crohn's disease.
Teens can be especially frustrated by this disease. Flare-ups may leave them feeling more dependent on their parents than they want to be. They may feel different from their friends. Counselling may help teens who are having a hard time coping with the disease.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: May 12, 2017
John Pope, MD, MPH - Pediatrics
& Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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