What is Inflammatory Bowel Disease?
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an umbrella term used to describe disorders that involve chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. There are two common types: ulcerative colitis, which causes ulcers, or sores, in the lining of the large intestine and rectum, and Crohn’s disease, which causes inflammation of the lining of any part of the digestive tract. Symptoms of IBD usually involve severe diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue and weight loss. IBD can be debilitating and sometimes lead to life-threatening complications. While there is no cure for IBD, treatment can reduce the inflammation that triggers your signs and symptoms, and, in the best cases, lead to long-term remission.
On this Mayo Clinic Radio program episode, Dr. Edward Loftus Jr., a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist, discusses diagnosing IBD and treatment options.