Our team of doctors at Colon & Rectal Surgical Specialists of New York can treat a wide range of colorectal health issues, including ulcerative colitis treatment. Our practice, located in Garden City, NY, and East Setauket, NY, provides diagnostic testing and treatment for chronic intestinal diseases that may be affecting you or a loved one. Whether you have already received a diagnosis, or are currently experiencing symptoms that may be associated with an inflamed colon, we provide a multifaceted approach towards your care.
What is Ulcerative Colitis?
Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammation in the innermost lining of the large intestine, also known as the colon, resulting from abnormal behavior of your body’s immune system. Your immune system, meant to defend against bacteria, viruses, and other unknown or invading substances, will mistakenly be activated to fight off all invading properties. When this occurs, food may be mistaken for foreign invaders, which causes your body’s white blood cells to be sent directly into the lining of your intestines. This may cause the inflammation and ulcerations that lead to rectal bleeding, frequent bowel movements, rectal discharge, and lower abdominal pain.
Signs and Symptoms
Patients experiencing ulcerative colitis may have symptoms that tend to come and go indeterminately. Symptoms may flare up for a period of time, and may be followed by long periods of time in which little to no discomfort is felt. Patients may experience weight loss as a result of loss of appetite and bouts of fatigue, and it may cause a delay in growth and development in younger children.
Nearly half of all patients with ulcerative colitis will experience mild symptoms. Some of the symptoms may include:
- Bloody stool
- Looser, more urgent bowel movements
- Persistent diarrhea
- Abdominal pain
Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammation in the innermost lining of the large intestine, resulting from abnormal behavior of your body’s immune system.
Treating Ulcerative Colitis
Although there is no cure for ulcerative colitis, our primary goal in treating the condition is to help regulate the immune system. We can help ease your symptoms and improve your quality of life during flare-ups through a combination of treatment options. These options may include:
- Medication: Several types of medications can be used to help suppress inflammation in the colon, as well as to decrease the frequency of flare-ups. With proper treatment, we can increase the period of time between flare-ups and reduce the period of time in which you experience symptoms.
- Diet and Nutrition Change: Although ulcerative colitis is not a result of the type of foods you eat, a healthy diet can reduce your symptoms. If experiencing diarrhea as a result of ulcerative colitis, your body's capacity to absorb necessary nutrients decreases. Eating a nutrient-rich diet can replace lost nutrients and help promote healing.
- Surgery: Patients not benefiting from alternate solutions but otherwise in good health may opt for a surgical procedure to remove the colon in more severe cases of inflammation. Various techniques may be considered, which will be discussed during a consultation with your doctor.
Schedule a Consultation
Living with ulcerative colitis can be a painful and frustrating time for you or your loved one. Our team of doctors are experts in working with patients who would like to regain their comfort, live a higher quality of life, and minimize the effects of intestinal disease. To learn more about our treatments and your options, please contact us today.