Crohn's Disease - Symptoms

The first symptoms of Crohn's disease include diarrhea, fever, abdominal pain, inability to eat, weight loss, and fatigue. The abdominal pain is somewhat like that experienced by an individual with appendicitis (see appendicitis entry). An ongoing symptom of Crohn's disease may be malnutrition. Inflammation caused by the disorder interferes with the absorption of nutrients in foods and a patient may slowly become more and more malnourished.

A pocket of infection within tissue.
Inflammation of a joint.
Barium enema:
A procedure in which a white liquid is injected into a patient's rectum in order to coat the lining of the colon so that X-ray photographs of the colon can be taken.
An instrument consisting of a long, flexible tube with a light attached to the end, used for examining the lining of the colon.
An abnormal tube-like passage in tissue.
Gastrointestinal system:
The digestive system consisting of the stomach and intestines.
Immune system:
A network of organs, tissues, cells, and chemicals designed to protect the body against foreign invaders such as bacteria and viruses.
Redness, swelling, and loss of function caused by the body's attempt to fight off an infection.
Inflammatory bowel disease:
A large group of disorders that affect the gastrointestinal system.
A blockage.

Crohn's disease also can lead to a number of complications. These complications include:

  • Obstructions. An obstruction is a blockage of the intestine. Partially digested food is not able to pass through the intestine. It may back up, causing constipation, vomiting, and intense pain.
  • Abscesses. An abscess is a pocket of infection within tissue. Abscesses in the intestine may cause fever and severe abdominal pain.
  • Fistulas. A fistula is an abnormal tube-like passage in tissue. Fistulas may allow fluids to drain out of the intestine into another part of the body. When they do so, bacteria that live in the intestine may cause infections in other areas of the body.
  • Gallstones and kidney stones
  • Kidney damage
  • Arthritis (see arthritis entry)
  • Inflammation of the vertebrae, the bones of the spine
  • Ulcers of the mouth and skin
  • Painful, red bumps on the skin
  • Inflammation of the eyes, liver, and gallbladder

User Contributions:

Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic:

The Content is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of Content found on the Website.