Crohn's disease - Symptoms and causes
June 16, 2021 | Farah Jassawalla

Crohn's disease - Symptoms and causes

Crohn’s Disease is a kind of inflammatory bowel disease that can affect different parts of the Gastrointestinal Tract from the mouth to the Anus. Usually, Crohn’s disease affects the small intestine or the Colon. The inflammation due to Crohn’s disease can be continuous or can be dispersed all over the Gastrointestinal tract.

Causes of Crohn’s Disease:

Despite a lot of research, the exact cause of Crohn’s disease has not yet been determined. Researchers and doctors believe that it can be a combination of various factors like:

      Genetics: Studies have found that around 20% of patients suffering from Crohn’s disease have a relative with similar inflammatory bowel disease. This theory has not been proven yet but researchers believe that genes do play a role in the development of Crohn’s disease.

      False Response of Immune System: The immune system is the weapon of our body that fights off any harmful invader like a virus, harmful bacteria, or fungi. But sometimes the immune system mistakes good microbes for invaders and unnecessarily attacks them causing inflammation in the Gastrointestinal tract. This theory is a probable explanation but still not proven.

      Environment: Scientists have connected Crohn’s disease to environmental factors. They believe that certain environments can trigger false immune system responses or cause ulcers and inflammations in the Gastrointestinal tract like unhealthy diet, smoking, or exposure to bacteria, fungi, or viruses.


The symptoms of Crohn’s depend on the part of the Gastrointestinal tract affected by the disease. Various symptoms range from mild to severe but if one experiences abdominal pain, indigestion, or diarrhea often, it is better to get it checked immediately. Some of the common symptoms of Crohn’s disease are as follows:

      Blood in excretion

      Constipation or blocked bowel

      Abdominal pain and cramps

      Weight loss

      Sores in the mouth or on the anus

      Painful bowel movements

      Fatigue and fever 


Since Crohn’s disease affects different parts of the Gastrointestinal tract and has symptoms like other diseases it is not easy to diagnose. Doctors have to run multiple tests and rule out other probable diseases to conclude that the patient is suffering from Crohn’s disease. Some of the common tests that doctors conduct to diagnose Crohn’s disease are as follows:

      Blood Tests- Complete blood count test, C- reactive protein test and antibody test, etc.

      Imaging tests like Ultrasounds and X-rays.

      Endoscopy with balloons attached to move in the small intestine

      MRI and CT scans


There is no particular cure for Crohn’s disease yet. However, doctors use a combination of medication and therapies depending on the area affected by Crohn’s disease to help patients cope with it and make its symptoms less acute. The following are a few treatments suggested by doctors:

      Medications- doctors prescribe various drugs and steroids to ease the inflammation caused by the disease. To acquire any medications, go to the Shifa4U online website and book your order.

      Some doctors also suggest biological therapies which target certain proteins made by the immune system. This also helps reduce inflammation.

      Different antibiotics and pain medications are also prescribed by doctors to deal with infections and abdominal pain.

      Changing eating habits- Once you have been diagnosed with Crohn's disease the doctor may ask you to lay off certain foods that may cause diarrhea like lactose-rich foods, Fat, sugar, and strong spices, etc.

      SurgeryIn extreme cases, where patients have been battling with Crohn’s disease for a long time, a part of the intestine may be damaged severely and must be removed via surgery to save the other parts of the intestine. 

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Farah Jassawalla

Farah Jassawalla is a graduate of the Lahore School of Economics. She is also a writer, and healthcare enthusiast, having closely observed case studies while working with Lahore's thriving general physicians at their clinics.