Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
Ulcerative colitis is a disease that affects around 700,000 Americans. The disease can occur at any time in a person’s life, but usually shows signs or symptoms in those aged 15 – 30 years old. The disease affects both men and women equally, showing identical symptoms in all genders. Knowing the general symptoms of ulcerative colitis can help give you the information you need to confidently talk to your physician or medical professional in order to receive an official diagnosis.
Inovera Bioscience offers a calcium and vitamin D supplement to help reduce and manage the symptoms caused by ulcerative colitis. We also offer a multivitamin for those that suffer from malabsorption, which is a condition caused by the small intestine’s inability to absorb vital nutrients and liquids and is often brought on by ulcerative colitis. All of our natural supplements are designed to be highly absorbable, so those that suffer from diseases like ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, and other inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs) can use the nutrients they provide.
UC is an inflammatory condition that affects the GI tract. However, unlike Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis only affects the large intestine (the colon and rectum). The disease can affect the entire colon or just a part of it, but occurs nowhere else but the large intestine. Symptoms can range from mild to severe, and most people that suffer from UC often experience fluctuations of severity as well as duration throughout their lives. Keep reading to see the main symptoms of ulcerative colitis
Abdominal Pain & Cramps
Pain in the abdomen as well as cramping from bloating can occur when someone is suffering from UC. Gas pain and bloating can also occur due to blockages in the stool. Diarrhea can also cause abdominal discomfort of pain.
Blood in the Stool
Blood can be seen in the stool or when you wipe when you have ulcerative colitis. This is often caused by the bleeding from fistulas or inflammation in the colon. Most of the time, this is what leads people to go to the doctor and get a medical diagnosis for their UC.
One of the most common symptoms of ulcerative colitis is diarrhea. It is frequent, and often seems like it will never go away. Diarrhea can also lead to dehydration, cramping, fever, and numerous other uncomfortable symptoms.
Since your body is constantly trying to fight off this disease, you may experience slight or extreme fatigue depending on the severity of your symptoms. Your body is constantly trying to regulate your immune system, which results in fatigue. And if your body is unable to absorb essential nutrients, such as iron and vitamin D, then you’ll experience a constant loss of energy.
Nausea may occur at certain points of an ulcerative colitis flare-up, which may keep you from eating. These flare-ups can thus lead to unhealthy weight loss as well as added lethargy due to malnutrition. Depression from ulcerative colitis may also lead to an inability or lack of enthusiasm to eat.
If you suspect that you or a loved one may be suffering from ulcerative colitis or another IBD, call your doctor or healthcare provider to discuss any health concerns you may have. Your physician will work with you to set-up proper treatment of your ulcerative colitis. For those suffering from ulcerative colitis and malabsorption, Forvia and Forbones Xtra D can help control your symptoms and help you get back to normal.
Ulcerative Colitis Diagnosis
In order to get proper treatment for your ulcerative colitis, you’ll first have to get a medical diagnosis from a licensed physician. This means you’ll have to schedule a visit with a doctor who can discuss symptoms, medical history, and order tests. Once you have a medical diagnosis, then you can begin taking prescribed medicine and nutritional supplements for your ulcerative colitis.
Inovera Bioscience offers two highly absorbable ulcerative colitis supplements that help reduce symptoms caused by vitamin deficiency brought on by certain IBDs. Forvia comes in both a tablet as well as a chewable multivitamin with iron. Forbones Xtra D is a calcium and vitamin D supplement in a water-miscible form that can be used as an alternative form of medicine to help those who can’t absorb fats well due to ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s Disease. Both supplements help promote better intestinal absorption and can help reduce stomach distress.
Below are a few procedures your doctor may try in order to properly diagnose you with ulcerative colitis. One or more of the tests may be required in order to get an accurate diagnosis depending on your medical record and possible symptoms. Keep in mind that this isn’t a comprehensive list, so other tests not highlighted below might be needed.
Endoscopy for Ulcerative Colitis
An endoscopy is a medical procedure where a tube is inserted into your GI tract so that the gastroenterologist can see your colon, anus, intestines, and stomach. In order to minimize discomfort, you may be put under a general anesthesia. There are new tests that, instead of a traditional endoscopy procedure, you are allowed to swallow a pill containing a camera that takes about 50,000 pictures of your digestive tract as it naturally passes through your system. You simply wear a recorder at your waist, which records the images and allows your doctor to accurately diagnose anything that may be happening in your GI tract.
Blood Tests for Ulcerative Colitis
A blood test can help reveal whether or not you have ulcerative colitis. Since visual examination can’t provide conclusive results, viewing your body at one of its smallest but most-integral components can help reveal answers about its condition. Your doctor will be looking for elevated white blood cells, low blood proteins and mineral levels, anemia, and higher sedimentation rates. A blood test won’t give doctors a definite answer, but it does provide a piece to the larger picture.
X-Rays to Test for Ulcerative Colitis
X-rays are a powerful ally in diagnosing ulcerative colitis as well as Crohn’s Disease. Plain x-rays can reveal blockages in your intestines, which are caused by inflammation and possible scarring. Contrast x-rays can reveal bowel obstruction and perforation of the colon and large intestine.
CT Scan for Ulcerative Colitis
Also known as a CAT scan, CT scans take cross-views of your digestive tract and colon to put together small pictures of your GI tract. This can detect what’s happening in your large intestine as well as your entire GI tract for increased accuracy. Oral and IV contrast tests may also be required with CT scans.
Talk to your doctor so you can explore various types of tests that they think are appropriate for you. Your physician will also be able to teach you more about ulcerative colitis, treatments, medications, therapies, and other supplements you can take if you have UC.
Causes of Ulcerative Colitis
While no one knows for sure what causes ulcerative colitis, it is known that UC is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease. Causes of ulcerative colitis can differ from person to person, but there are a few factors that can have an effect on whether or not you develop the disease. Regardless of how you developed ulcerative colitis, you will need some kind of treatment that can help to reduce and control flare-ups when they occur.
Forvia and Forbones Xtra D by Inovera are multivitamins that help treat ulcerative colitis. They help fight malabsorption and help your digestive tract to absorb vital nutrients. Talk to your doctor and see if Forvia or Forbones Xtra D is right for you.
It is important to know that ulcerative colitis is not a contagious disease. You cannot transmit the disease from touch or proximity of any kind. Causes of ulcerative colitis can include but are not limited to:
You can inherit and pass on genes that make you or others more susceptible to developing the disease. Up to 20 percent of people with ulcerative colitis have a blood relative that also has the disease, and chances of developing UC increase if both parents have an irritable bowel condition.
Studies show people who live in developed countries have a higher chance of developing ulcerative colitis. On top of that, those who live in cities have a higher chance of getting UC than those who live in more rural areas.
Your immune system may be hurting itself when you develop ulcerative colitis. UC can develop when inflammation in the colon occurs, which may be a response to certain foods or substance in foods. It may also occur as an autoimmune response, which happens when your GI tissues are inflamed and your body works against itself. Sometimes your body does a little too much to try and protect itself, which can result in the development of diseases like UC and Crohn’s.
It’s unsure whether or not ulcerative colitis happens solely from how you live your life, but certain activities and traits can surely increase the odds of you developing an autoimmune disease. Diet is thought to be one of the biggest factors in developing ulcerative colitis. Smokers are also at an increased risk of possible flare-ups since smoking affects your immune system. High stress levels and lack of sleep can also contribute to GI or colon inflammation, which can lead to the development of autoimmune diseases.
If you believe that you may have ulcerative colitis, or any other autoimmune disease, be sure to speak with a physician to seek proper treatment. Be sure to tell them everything that may have contributed to your development of ulcerative colitis.