Though symptoms vary, ulcerative colitis can be debilitating and have a significant effect on your quality of life. However, treatment is available that can keep the inflammatory bowel disease in remission. The experienced board-certified gastroenterologists at Gastroenterology Associates of Central Georgia in Macon, Georgia, specialize in the diagnosis and management of ulcerative colitis and can provide the care needed to help you gain control over this inflammatory bowel disease. Call the office to schedule an appointment today.
Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease that affects the large intestines. The condition causes inflammation, swelling, and ulcers that affect the inner lining of your colon and rectum.
Doctors are still investigating the underlying cause of ulcerative colitis, but theorize that it may develop from an immune system reaction in which your immune cells mistakenly attack the lining of your large intestine while fending off an invading pathogen.
You may be at greater risk of developing ulcerative colitis if it runs in your family. It also tends to initially develop before age 30, although it can become a problem at any age.
Ulcerative colitis tends to develop gradually, and the symptoms you experience may vary in type and severity. Some of the most common symptoms include:
Although less common, ulcerative colitis can also lead to joint pain, rashes, and eye irritation. For most people with chronic ulcerative colitis, symptoms are mild to moderate, and they may experience months or even years of remission.
The board-certified gastroenterologists at Gastroenterology Associates of Central Georgia conduct a comprehensive examination when you come to the office with symptoms that may indicate ulcerative colitis. Before formalizing a diagnosis, the team may need to rule out other causes of your symptoms by performing tests such as:
The team also reviews your medical and family history and conducts a physical exam.
No single treatment works for everyone with ulcerative colitis, and the team at Gastroenterology Associates of Central Georgia works closely with you to develop a plan that helps you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Treatment for ulcerative colitis may include various medications and surgery in some cases.
There are several types of medications used to treat ulcerative colitis, and the best one for you may depend on the location of your inflammation and your symptoms. Biologics are a very new treatment for ulcerative colitis and specifically target the proteins in your immune system that lead to the inflammation. Gastroenterology Associates of Central Georgia has a private infusion center specifically for these treatments.
Surgery for ulcerative colitis often involves the removal of the entire colon and rectum.
To learn more about ulcerative colitis and whether it’s the cause of your abdominal pain, contact Gastroenterology Associates of Central Georgia by phone today.