"Dr. Herman is the best, office staff is a pleasure."
"Dr. Herman is patient & understanding and I feel his skill level is superior!"
Ulcerative colitis is one of two major forms of inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD (the second major form is Crohn's disease). Ulcerative colitis causes ulcers, or sores, in the lining of the colon and the rectum, and without proper management, it can cause serious medical problems like internal bleeding which can become life-threatening.
Ulcerative colitis can cause a wide array of symptoms, including:
bleeding from the rectum
pain in the rectum
increased need to move the bowels
unintentional weight loss
The type of symptoms can vary based on which portion of the colon is affected and the severity of the disease. Ulcerative colitis can increase the risk of developing colon cancer, and it can also increase the risk of developing a perforation, or hole, in your colon, which can cause life-threatening complications.
The underlying cause of ulcerative colitis is not completely understood, but research indicates the condition may develop when the immune system reacts abnormally, sending out agents that attack healthy colon tissue. Ulcerative colitis occurs more commonly among people with a family history of the disease, and some research has indicated a possible link between ulcerative colitis and the acne drug isotretinoin, although to date, results are inconclusive.
Ulcerative colitis is typically diagnosed with a colonoscopy to extract tiny samples of tissue (biopsies) for evaluation under a microscope. Your symptoms and risk factors may also help lead to a diagnosis.
In most cases, ulcerative colitis can be successfully managed with medications, including drugs to control inflammation or mediate the immune system responses. Antibiotics, pain medications and anti-diarrhea medications may also be prescribed. In severe cases, surgery may be required.
For any questions regarding our insurance policies, please call the office.