Ulcerative Colitis (UC) affects up to 120,000 people in the UK.
It is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that causes long-lasting inflammation in part of the digestive tract. Like Crohn’s disease, UC can be debilitating and sometimes can lead to life-threatening complications. It is a chronic condition: symptoms usually develop over time, rather than appearing suddenly. [Ref]
UC usually affects only the innermost lining of the large intestine (colon) and rectum. Unlike Crohn’s, which can occur anywhere in the digestive tract and often spreads deeply into affected tissue, UC occurs only through continuous stretches of the colon.
The cause of ulcerative colitis is unknown. People with this condition have problems with the immune system. But, it is not clear if immune problems cause this illness. Stress and certain foods can trigger symptoms. But they do not cause ulcerative colitis
There’s no known cure for Ulcerative Colitis. But therapies are available that may dramatically reduce symptoms and even bring about long-term remission. [Ref]
Signs & Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis
- Abdominal pain
- Blood and/or mucus in stool
- Diarrhoea that does not respond to over-the-counter (OTC) medications
- Unexplained fever lasting more than 1-2 days