Ulcerative colitis is a chronic colon inflammation (large intestine as a part of digestive system with anus at the end of it), while Crohn's disease is inflammatory process that affects lining of the digestive tract and the parts of bowels. These two diseases together are known as inflammatory bowel disease or IBD, and if untreated properly it can leads to serious cases of diarrhea, strong abdominal pain and even malnutrition.
Ulcerative colitis affects between half and two million people in U.S. alone. That chronic disorders may last for years and affect women and man equally.
Causes of Ulcerative colitis are still unknown. At one point, stress and bad diet were attributed to possible causes of Ulcerative colitis, but now it is known that many factors may or can attribute to development of this disorder, or maybe even aggravate already existing state. Now it is believed that dysbalances in the immune system functions (in cases when immune systems attacks certain bacteria or virus, causing inflammation) or heredity factors (hereditary mutating genes found in the people with Ulcerative colitis) may be responsible.
Symptoms of Ulcerative colitis may appear suddenly, at can be very strong. Some of these symptoms may be fever, diarrhea, appetite loss or reduced appetite, abdominal cramping and pain, fatigue, ulcers on the surface of the intestine.
In cases of Ulcerative colitis many complications are possible. These complications may be excessive bleeding in the intestine, malnutrition, diarrhea, bowel perforation or obstruction, appearance of abscess of fistulas, obstruction or blockage of intestines, open ulcers or sores, abdominal pain, anal fissures, etc.
Problem is that Ulcerative colitis can not be totally cured surgically. If small intestines, stomach or colon are affected, and the affected portions are surgically removed, inflammation can still be recurrent. Depending of where on the colon inflammation is placed prognosis for recovery may vary.
Types of surgery
There are usually two most common type of surgery for Ulcerative colitis. One is called restorative proctocolectomy, and it is a two stage procedure; in first stage not the entire colon is removed and pouch is placed in the intestines in order to adapt digestive tract and prepare it foe stage two when the rest of the colon is removed.
Second type of surgery is called proctocolectomy and ileostomy, and it is a procedure where all of the colon and anus were taken out and a small hole is made on your stomach through which small intestine is inserted in order to relieve your body waste.
Risk of surgery
Although surgical procedures like proctocolectomy are carried out for years and are considered safe, there are several potential risks in some cases pouch may leak, or become inflamed. The bowel obstruction as a result of surgery may occur.