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Crohn's Disease

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Our multidisciplinary team of specialists at Houston Methodist Lynda K. and David M. Underwood Center for Digestive Disorders work together to assess complex gastrointestinal (GI) conditions with state-of-the-art technologies. 

 

Crohn’s disease differs from other inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) because it can occur anywhere in the GI tract between the mouth and the anus. Other IBD conditions occur in the large intestine. This makes Crohn’s challenging to pinpoint and requires skilled medical professionals to diagnose.

 

U.S. News & World Report ranks Houston Methodist Hospital highest in Texas and the Gulf Coast for digestive disorders. We are also ranked by U.S. News & World Report as No. 1 in Texas for the 12th year and 5th in the nation for Gastroenterology & GI Surgery.

 

Data from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) indicates Crohn’s disease impacts roughly 700,000 Americans. The average patient is 15 to 35 years old with an immune system that is more sensitive to bacteria, or compromised by genetic or lifestyles factors, such as smoking. 

 

Each time a toxin enters the digestive system, the immune system causes irritation as it works to fight it. Layers of scar tissue develop in response to the irritation, which leads to complications, including chronic inflammation. Once you have Crohn’s disease, you will have to manage it for the rest of your life. It is best to catch it early to reduce symptoms.

Driven by Patient Outcomes

We specialize in the care of patients with complex cases that were not resolved at other hospitals. We have surgeons, nurses, dietitians and social workers who work with you from examination and diagnosis through treatment and follow-up.

 

Some patients who fall outside the average age for Crohn’s disease may need special attention. Our multidisciplinary team will provide nutritional support, and our social workers will focus on the patient’s well-being as they mature with this condition.

Top-Rated Medical Center Nationwide

The Underwood Center provides access to world-class, advanced diagnostic tools and research via clinical trials. We will use the methods below, among others, to assess your Crohn’s disease indicators, give confirmation and offer a treatment regimen.

 

Noninvasive imaging techniques:

Computerized tomography – (X-ray) scan of the abdomen
Intestinal ultrasound
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the abdomen

 

Minimally invasive diagnostic procedures:

Capsule endoscopy – camera inside a pill-sized capsule
Upper endoscopy – camera attached to a tube
Colonoscopy- camera attached to a tube

Other Gastrointestinal Conditions We Treat

Achalasia
Appendicitis
Barrett's Esophagus
Celiac Disease
Cirrhosis
Colitis
Diverticulitis
Dyspepsia (indigestion)
Dysphagia
Gallstones
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
Heartburn
Hepatitis
Hiatal Hernia
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
Lactose Intolerance
Liver Cancer
Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatitis
Stomach and Esophageal Cancer
Ulcer
Ulcerative Colitis
Wilson Disease 

Crohn’s Disease Diagnosis & Treatment

What are the signs and symptoms of Crohn’s disease?

Several symptoms may indicate the presence of Crohn´s disease. Contact your doctor if any of the following persist:

 

Abdominal pain
Chronic diarrhea
Fever or cold chills
Night sweats
Poor appetite
Rectal bleeding or pain
Vomiting
Unexplained weight loss

How is Crohn’s disease diagnosed?

The center offers several of the latest tests available to diagnose Crohn´s disease including:

 

Capsule endoscopy 
 Colonoscopy
 Intestinal ultrasound
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
Stool analysis
Upper gastrointestinal (UGI) endoscopy

 

How is Crohn’s disease treated?

We offer the latest and most comprehensive options that address the disease, including any psychological and nutritional needs. Anti-inflammatory medications reduce the signs and symptoms of Crohn’s. The pharmaceuticals ease symptoms, repair damaged tissue and postpone the need for surgery. The medication prescribed will vary based on the severity of the condition and the most affected portion of the digestive system.

 

While there is no cure for Crohn´s disease, our gastroenterology specialists have specific goals for the treatment of this disorder to make you more comfortable.

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