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Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic condition, which causes inflammation and formation of sores (ulcers) in inner lining of the gastrointestinal tract. It usually begins in the rectum and spreads upwards to the colon and large intestine. The exact cause of the disease is not known. However, some researchers claim that it is caused by an abnormal immune response to the normal bacteria in the digestive tract. This condition can affect people across all ages. However, most cases are reported between 15-35 years of age. Ulcerative colitis is known to run in families.

Complications of ulcerative colitis can be deadly. If not treated on time, ulcerative colitis can lead to intestinal bleeding, perforated colon, sepsis (infection in the blood) and severe dehydration. Studies have proven that ulcerative colitis highly increases the risk of colon cancer.

 

Signs and Symptoms

The most common symptoms of ulcerative colitis include

  • Diarrhea (often with blood or pus)
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Rectal pain and bleeding
  • Fever and fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Malnutrition

Severe ulcerative colitis may cause additional symptoms such as:

  • Joint pain
  • Inflammation of eyes
  • Skin rashes

Diagnosis

If you have severe diarrhea which does not resolve with over the counter medication, and abdominal pain, you must get yourself checked. Your physician would assess your abdominal sounds and check for abdominal tenderness. You would be referred for the following tests for confirming the cause of your symptoms

  1. Blood tests: Blood tests are done to check for the following:
  2. Inflammation: This can be assessed by checking the levels of ESR, and C- reactive protein.
  3. Anemia: Loss of blood can result in anemia. This can be assessed by determining the levels of red blood cells and hemoglobin.
  4. Stool tests: Stool sample is used for check for infection of the gastrointestinal tract. Presence of pus and white blood cells in the stool may indicate ulcerative colitis. Stool sample can also be sent for culture to check for bacterial, viral or parasitic infection.
  5. Colonoscopy and sigmoidoscopy: These procedures involve inserting a thin flexible, lighted tube with an attached camera to view the insides of the colon. Colonoscopy is preferred as it helps in viewing the entire colon whereas sigmoidoscopy is helpful only to view the end part(sigmoid part) of the colon. A tissue sample of the inner lining of the colon can also be collected using these procedures and sent for lab analysis(biopsy). Studying this tissue can help in confirming ulcerative colitis.
  6. CT Scan: A CT scan of abdomen or pelvis is performed to assess how much of the colon is inflamed and also to look for complications such as perforated colon.
  7. CT Enterography and Magnetic Resonance (MR): Your doctor may recommend this non-invasive test to exclude if any inflammation in the small intestine. These tests are more sensitive to assess inflammation in the bowel than conventional imaging test. MR enterography is a radiation free test.

Management of Ulcerative colitis

The treatment of ulcerative colitis includes drug therapy or surgery. Medications: Drug therapy focus on relieving the symptoms and preventing the complications of the disease. Anti-inflammatory drugs and immunosuppressants relieve inflammation, analgesics help in relieving pain, antidiarrheal control diarrhea, and antibiotics control infection. Iron supplements can also be prescribed if the patient is anemic.

Surgery: Protolectomy (complete removal of colon and rectum) may be indicated in patients with severe ulcerative colitis. Surgery can also be used to treat complications such as intestinal bleeding and perforated colon.

Home Remedies: Changes in the lifestyle and food habits may prevent the symptoms from worsening. Certain problem foods that may aggravate the symptoms of ulcerative colitis include:

  • High fiber foods- raw fruits, vegetables and whole grains
  • High fat food- Deep fried foods, butter, mayonnaise
  • Spicy foods
  • Carbonated drinks and alcohol

Certain medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can also cause flare ups and should thus be avoided.

Why choose Apollo Diagnostics?

We have the expertise of 34 + years in healthcare. Our labs are equipped with EQUAS (External Quality Assurance System) and loaded with full automated machines to ensure error free reports, with a quick turnaround time, and at an affordable price. For your convenience, we offer free home collection of samples.

For appointments, please call 4444 2424.

References

  1. Ulcerative Colitis. https://www.healthline.com/health/ulcerative-colitis#Overview1. Assessed on 27-10-2017.
  2. Ulcerative Colitis Causes. https://www.crohnsandcolitis.com/ulcerative-colitis/causes. Assessed on 27-10-2017.
  3. Ulcerative Colitis. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ulcerative-colitis/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20353331. Assessed on 27-10-2017.
  4. Ulcerative Colitis. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ulcerative_colitis#Signs_and_symptoms. Assessed on 27-10-2017.
  5. Ulcerative Colitis. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/digestive-diseases/ulcerative-colitis. Assessed on 27-10-2017.

Patient Testimonials

“Finding the best place for a diagnostic test is as important as consulting the best doctor. The Apollo name was what guided me to Apollo Diagnostics and I am indeed glad that I came here. From attending us on time to sample collection, everything flowed so smoothly. I was particularly impressed by the hygiene. It was definitely a value for money experience. Thanks a lot Apollo Diagnostics…keep up the good work!”

Mrs. Ferha Jabeen, Old Bowenpally, Secunderabad

“I Have heard a lot of good things about Apollo Diagnostics from our family physician as well as from relatives and friends. So then next time I needed a diagnostic centre, I visited Apollo Diagnostics and I was really glad I did. For one, I didn’t have to wait. The technician was extremely good, and the place was really clean. It was certainly a value for money experience. Great job Apollo Diagnostics!”

Ms. T. Jaya, Nakkalagutta, Hanmakonda

“I must say Apollo Diagnostics places a great value on time and patient comfort! I am a fan of their home collection service which is not only on time and technically sound, but the hygiene and cordiality of the visiting technician is also commendable. Hats off! I’ll continue to recommend Apollo Diagnostics to my family and friends.”

Mr. B. Pochaiah, Mallikarjuna Nagar Colony, Old Bowenpally, Secunderabad

“I have always had a great experience with Apollo Diagnostics. The calls are unfailingly answered. The scheduled appointment is kept to the minute. The phlebotomist is well-trained in both technique and putting the patient at ease. Apollo Diagnostics undoubtedly delivers value for money. They will always be my top option for all the diagnostic needs of my family.”

Mr. Prasanta Kumar Jena, JP Nagar, Bengaluru

“I came to know about Apollo Diagnostics from my relatives and friends. So, when I required a check up to be done, I thought about trying their service once. From sticking to the appointed time to accuracy of technique, it was really a great experience overall. Hygiene of the technician and the centre as well, was also quite admirable. I certainly felt it delivers value for money service. From now on, I’ll always visit Apollo Diagnostics for all my checkups.”

Mr. Venkateshwar Rao, Hanmakonda

“I was looking for a good diagnostic centre to get some checkups done. I was confused as there are so many of them all over the city. Some of my friends recommended Apollo Diagnostics as the best one. I’ll always remain thankful to them. The technician at Apollo Diagnostics was not only punctual but his competency was certainly praiseworthy. I never felt any discomfort as he was so confident and compassionate. Great job Apollo Diagnostics!”

Mr. T Radhakishan Rao, Hanmakonda

“My experience with Apollo Diagnostics has been consistently good. Securing the appointment was very easy and the schedule was maintained to the dot. The behaviour of the technician was pleasant and he was well–versed with his job. The place was noticeably clean and I did not face any discomfort during the process. The reports were delivered as promised and surprisingly, the service was pretty affordable. I would recommend Apollo Diagnostics to my circle without any hesitation!”

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“Apollo Diagnostics came highly recommended by my friends. I was particularly impressed by their cordiality, time management and process competence. Another must mention is the hygiene factor that is impeccable. Given the quality delivered, this is certainly a value for money experience. Thanks a lot Apollo Diagnostics…keep up the great work!”

Ms. A.Madhavi, Warangal

“Our family physician strictly instructed me to get the checkup done at Apollo Diagnostics. I am glad I respected his opinion. I was attended to as soon as I went in. The technician was a true expert at his job and made it a painless experience for me. I also observed that the centre was spotless and all the staff members were particular about maintaining hygiene. Apollo Diagnostics certainly delivers value for money. I’ll always recommend Apollo Diagnostics to my family and friends.”

Ms. Vimala, Hanmakonda

“My Apollo Diagnostics experience has thus far been truly amazing. Besides unfailingly maintaining the schedule – be it sample taking or report delivery, their sense of cleanliness is also tops. The technicians are well-trained and do their job with diligence and in a friendly manner that puts patients at ease at once. Apollo Diagnostics is setting a very high standard indeed! Now that’s what I call a fine job!”

Ms. G. Jyothi, Warangal