Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Shahla Rah, MD, FACG

Gastroenterologist located in Newport Beach, CA & Irvine, CA

As many as 3 million people in the United States have an inflammatory bowel disease, which includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.These chronic gastrointestinal diseases can cause severe abdominal pain, diarrhea, and weight loss and affect your overall quality of life. Experienced board-certified gastroenterologist Shahla Rah, MD, FACG, located in Newport Beach and Irvine, California, specializes in the diagnosis and management of inflammatory bowel diseases and can develop a plan that puts you in control of your health. To schedule a consultation for your inflammatory bowel disease, contact the office by phone or online today.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Q & A

What is inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease is a medical term used to describe inflammation that occurs in the digestive system. Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are the two types of inflammatory bowel disease.

What is Crohn’s disease?

Crohn’s disease can cause inflammation and ulcerations in any part of your gastrointestinal system, from your mouth to your anus. However, the inflammation and ulcerations are most often found in the small intestines (ileum) and the beginning of the large intestines.

The inflammation and ulcerations caused by Crohn’s disease can affect the entire thickness of the gastrointestinal tissue. Crohn’s disease is classified by type based on the portion of the bowel affected:

  • Ileocolitis (terminal ileum and colon)
  • Ileitis (ileum only)
  • Gastroduodenal Crohn’s disease (stomach and duodenum)
  • Jejunoileitis (jejunum)
  • Crohn’s (granulomatous) colitis (large intestines)

Your symptoms, as well as the severity of complications, are dependent on the type of Crohn’s disease you have.

What is ulcerative colitis?

Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease that leads to inflammation and ulcerations in the lining of the large intestines, also referred to as the colon. Unlike Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis only affects the large intestines and only the innermost layer of gastrointestinal tissue. The sores caused by ulcerative colitis produce pus, which leads to abdominal pain and frequent bowel movements. 

Ulcerative colitis is classified into types based on the portion of the large intestines affected, which includes:

  • Ulcerative proctitis (rectum)
  • Left-sided colitis (rectum to left-side of colon)
  • Extensive colitis (entire colon)

Symptoms and complications of ulcerative colitis vary based on type. 

How is inflammatory bowel disease treated?

Dr. Rah works one-on-one with you to develop a treatment that helps you stay in control of your inflammatory bowel disease to minimize symptoms and improve quality of life. Treatment may include medications that control inflammation and symptoms and diet changes that eliminate foods that exacerbate symptoms, as well as foods that promote tissue healing and replenish nutrient stores.

If medication and diet fail to help you gain control over your inflammatory bowel disease, surgery to remove the diseased portion of your gastrointestinal tract may be recommended. 

With the right care, you can live a healthy and happy life with your inflammatory bowel disease. For the management of your gastrointestinal condition from a compassionate physician, call Shahla Rah, MD, FACG, or use the online booking tool.