Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that causes long-lasting inflammation and ulcers (sores) in your digestive tract. Ulcerative colitis affects the innermost lining of your large intestine (colon) and rectum.

Risk Factors: – 1) Age. Ulcerative colitis usually begins before the age of 30. But, it can occur at any age, and some people may not develop the disease until after age 60. 2) Race or ethnicity. Although whites have the highest risk of the disease, it can occur in any race. If you are of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, your risk is even higher. 3) Family history. You are at higher risk if you have a close relative, such as a parent, sibling or child, with the disease.

Symptoms: –   1) Diarrhea, often with blood or pus. 2) Abdominal pain and cramping. 3) Rectal pain. 4) Rectal bleeding — passing small amount of blood with stool. 5) Urgency to defecate. 6) Inability to defecate despite urgency. 7) Weight loss. 8) Fatigue. 9) Fever. 10) In children, failure to grow

Types: – Ulcerative proctitis. Inflammation is confined to the area closest to the anus (rectum), and rectal bleeding may be the only sign of the disease. This form of ulcerative colitis tends to be the mildest. 1) Proctosigmoiditis. Inflammation involves the rectum and sigmoid colon (lower end of the colon). Signs and symptoms include bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramps and pain, and an inability to move the bowels in spite of the urge to do so (tenesmus). 2) Left-sided colitis. Inflammation extends from the rectum up through the sigmoid and descending colon. Signs and symptoms include bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and pain on the left side, and unintended weight loss. 3) Pancolitis. Pancolitis often affects the entire colon and causes bouts of bloody diarrhea that may be severe, abdominal cramps and pain, fatigue, and significant weight loss. 4) Acute severe ulcerative colitis. This rare form of colitis affects the entire colon and causes severe pain, profuse diarrhea, bleeding, fever and inability to eat.

Diagnostic Test: – 1) Stool test: A doctor examines your stool for blood, bacteria, and parasites. 2) Endoscopy: A doctor uses a flexible tube to examine your stomach, esophagus, and small intestine. 3) Colonoscopy: This diagnostic test involves insertion of a long, flexible tube into your rectum to examine the inside of your colon. 4) Biopsy: A surgeon removes a tissue sample from your colon for analysis. 5) CT scan: This is a specialized X-ray of your abdomen and pelvis.

Complication: – 1) Severe bleeding. 2) A hole in the colon (perforated colon). 3) Severe dehydration. 4) Liver disease (rare). 5) Bone loss (osteoporosis). 6) Inflammation of your skin, joints and eyes. 7) An increased risk of colon cancer. 8) A rapidly swelling colon (toxic megacolon). 9) Increased risk of blood clots in veins and arteries

Medications: 1) mesalamine (Asacol and Lialda). 2) Sulfasalazine (Azulfidine). 3) balsalazide (Colazal). 4) olsalazine (Dipentum). Surgery: – involves removing your entire colon with the creation of a new pathway for waste. This pathway can be out through a small opening in your abdominal wall or redirected back through the end of your rectum.

Dietary management: – 1) eat a low-fat diet: It’s not clear why a low-fat diet is beneficial, but research suggests eating more low-fat foods may delay flares. When you do eat fat, pick healthier options like olive oil and omega-3 fatty acids. 2) Take in more vitamin C: This vitamin may have a protective effect on your intestines. People who eat diets rich in vitamin C have prolonged periods of UC remission.  3) Eat more fiber: During a flare, bulky, slow-moving fiber is the last thing you want in your intestines. During remission, fiber can help you stay regular. It may also improve how easily you can void during bowel movements. 4) Drinking small amounts of water throughout the day. 5) Eating smaller meals throughout the day. 6) Limiting your intake of high-fiber foods. 7) Avoiding fatty foods. 8) Lowering your intake of milk if you’re lactose intolerant. 9) Also, ask your doctor if you should take a multivitamin.

By – Nursing Tutor- : Janet Subba
Department – Dept. of Nursing
UCBMSH Magazine – (YouthRainBow)
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