Written by Fadia Tabib
Translated by Yara Berbery
Some Medical references disclosed to NNA the discovery of an additional number of people infected by Crohn disease. The sources called for the following up of this disease, the diagnosis of its symptoms and the means of treating it in order to prevent its aggravation and its implications that could affect the general health.
Crohn's disease is a chronic infection, but it's not contagious. It may affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract from mouth to anus. In fact, it was named after the American doctor who discovered it in 1932.
The said references disclosed that Crohn's disease was chronic but could be treated. However, its treatment takes a lot of time and it cannot be completely cured since it could appear from time to time.
Celiac Disease Doctor, Noha El Hachem Chidiac, told NNA that the causes of this disease were not medicinally proven. But, studies have shown the existence of genetic factors because 30% of patients diagnosed with this disease carry a gene mutation. Other daily life factors can cause this disease, such as the environment of the patient under the effect of an unorganized life. Exposure to an intestinal infection, frequent smoking, a diet that's rich with saturated fat and dairy products, and irregularity in the immune system also contribute to this disease.
"Dr. El Hachem said that the disease could affect all age groups, especially young people between 20 and 40 years or elders above 70 years. Its symptoms are similar to the ones of the digestive system: stomach pain; small fever increase; persistent diarrhea; vomiting; weight loss; loss of appetite. This disease can also affect other organs in the body; it can cause redness in the eyes, arthritis or skin diseases, as well as mouth sores. It is worth mentioning that a disease called ulcerative colitis is similar to Crhon's disease but it affects the large intestine only.
Dr. El Hachem said that the methods of the diagnosis are the following:
1- Crp test, blood test to detect inflammation.
2- Hemoglobine test, to measure the amount of hemoglobin in the blood.
3- Scan, to determine presence of auditory processing disorders and to diagnose stenosis.
4- EGD to examine the inside of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum and determine the place of the infection:
- Gastroscopy is an examination of the inside of the gullet, stomach and duodenum.
- Colonscopy is used to view the entire inner lining of the colon and the rectum.
The means of treating it require long-term solutions and take into consideration the development of the disease. In fact it could be treated according to three stages:
1- If the patient was in the first stage - SASA - the medicines given are Asacol or Pentasa.
2- If the patient was in an advanced and developed stage, the medicines given are Remicade or Immuran.
3- If the patient was in a very advanced stage, he can use Cortisone for a specific period in case of hard symptoms.
The patient can follow a diet if he had diarrhea with periodic tests, even if his health condition got better because this disease can suddenly appear.
The patient can be exposed to a number of side effects if the treatment was not supervised regularly, including the small intestine and the large one. He can also have a colon knot, which demands a surgery.
It is worth mentioning that people who have Crohn's disease are the most vulnerable to cancer in the intestines, which requires a permanent follow-up throughout the endoscope and laboratories under the supervision of a specialist.
Some patients can bleed during defecate in addition to secretions that may cause inflammations and a rise in temperature.