Chrohn’s disease is an inflammatory disease of the intestines that can cause ulcerations of the small and large intestines and can affect the digestive system from the mouth to the anus. While the exact cause is unknown, there are several symptoms that can alert you to the problem. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and can develop gradually or appear suddenly. It is common to go into remission and not see any symptoms for a period of time. However, many of the following Crohn’s disease symptoms will be familiar to sufferers of the condition.
This is the most commonly reported symptoms of Chrohn’s disease. Chrohn’s disease causes cells in your intestine to secrete water and salt that cannot be fully absorbed by the colon. This often leads to diarrhea and loose stool and some people report having diarrhea 10 to 20 times per day.
- Abdominal Pain and Discomfort
Pain and cramping in the abdomen is often caused by the swelling and thickening of the bowel walls due to scar tissue from ulceration. This can lead to abnormal movement of contents through the digestive tract, which in turn causes pain and other intestinal discomfort. This pain is usually intermittent and is sometimes characterized as causing soreness to the touch. A dull, persistent ache sometimes develops. In some cases, this develops further into nausea and vomiting.
- Blood in the Stool
Another Crohn’s disease symptom can be blood in your stools. As food passes through the digestive tract, it can cause inflamed tissue on the walls of your intestines and bowel to bleed. This can manifest in blood showing up in the stool, visible in the toilet, but sometimes does not show at all. This is known as occult blood. Excessive bleeding can lead to low iron levels which can result in anemia.
Small sores on the walls of the intestine often develop that can become larger ulcers that penetrate through the intestinal walls. Sometimes, people also develop ulcers in the mouth that are similar to canker sores.
- Reduced Appetite and/or Weight Loss
The abdominal pain associated with Chrohn’s disease often causes people to lose their appetite. In addition, inflammation of the walls of the bowel can interfere with digestion and absorption of food, manifesting most commonly in the form of diarrhea, which can lead to weight loss.
- Other Symptoms
Some people with Crohn’s disease also report such symptoms as fatigue, fever, night sweats, arthritis, skin conditions, eye inflammation and inflammation of the liver or bile ducts.