Listed below are many of the words you may come across concerning your disease.
A localised collection of pus in a cavity formed by the decay of diseased tissues.
Sudden onset of symptoms (as in relapse).
A reduction in the number of red cells, haemoglobin (iron) or volume of packed red cells in the body.
The joining together of two ends of a healthy bowel after a diseased bowel has been cut out (resected) by the surgeon.
Chronic inflammatory disease of the spine and nearby joints, which can cause pain and stiffness in the spine, neck, hips, jaw and rib cage.
The opening to the back passage.
Pains in the joints.
Inflammation of a joint(s) with pain, swelling and stiffness.
The portion of bowel extending from the caecum to the hepatic flexure.
Removal of small pieces of tissue from parts of the body (e.g. colon - colonic biopsy) for examination under the microscope for diagnosis.
The first part of the large intestine forming a dilated pouch into which opens the ileum, the colon and the appendix.
Symptoms occurring over a long period of time.
Characteristic appearance of the bowel mucosa (lining) seen in Crohn's disease (like 'cobblestones') formed from deep ulceration and swelling of the surrounding tissue.
Inflammation of the colon
The large intestine extending from the caecum to rectum. It has an ascending, transverse and descending portion.
Inspection of the colon by an illuminated telescope called a colonoscope.
Surgical creation of an opening between the colon and the surface of the body. Part of the colon is brought out onto the abdomen creating a stoma. A bag is placed over this to collect waste material.
Infrequent or difficulty in the passage of bowel motions.
Crohn's Activity Index
Measurement of the severity of active disease using symptom scores which are monitored over one week.
The act of passing faeces.
The portion of bowel between the splenic flexure and the sigmoid colon.
An increase in frequency, liquidity and weight of bowel motions (normal production * 200g in 24 hours)
Further down the bowel towards the anus.
Diverticulum (plural diverticula)
Small pouch-like projections through the muscular wall of the intestine which may become infected, causing diverticulitis.
Alteration in size, shape and organisation of mature cells that indicate the possible development of cancer.
Salts in the blood, e.g. sodium, potassium, calcium.
A liquid, (e.g. Barium or steroid) introduced into the rectum for treatment or diagnostic purposes to stimulate the production of a bowel motion.
A collective name for all visual inspections of body cavities with an illuminated telescope. Examples are:
Red, tender swellings occasionally seen on the shins and lower legs during a flare-up of inflammatory bowel disease. They usually subside when the disease is in remission.
Red cells in the blood which carry oxygen in haemoglobin.
An aggravation of symptoms.
The waste matter eliminated from the anus (other names - stools, motions).
Flexible fibres which carry light, e.g. in a colonoscope
A cleft or groove (crack) in the skin surface, (e.g. in the anus - anal fissure).
An abnormal connection, usually between two organs, or leading from an internal organ to the body surface, (e.g. between the anus and skin surface - anal fistula).
Gas from the rectum.
Colitis occurring suddenly with great intensity and severity.
Nodules of cells, surrounded by lymphocytes which can be found in all layers of the bowel. If present, they strongly suggest Crohn's disease.
Swollen veins in the area of the anus which bleed easily and are often painful. (Similar to varicose veins in the legs).
The passage of bloody stools.
Harvey and Bradshaw Index
Modified simple measurement of disease activity in Crohn's disease measured over a 24 hour period.
The portion of the colon at which the ascending and the transverse colon meet, below the liver.
The transmission of characteristics from parent to child.
The examination of tissues under the microscope to assist diagnosis.
Decreased albumin (protein) in the blood.
Decreased potassium in the blood.
Irritable bowel syndrome. A very common condition causing abdominal pain and diarrhoea or constipation but which differs from IBD in that no damage to the alimentary tract is detectable.
The formation of a pouch following colectomy by re-fashioning loops of ileum into a reservoir making an artificial rectum and joining it to the anus. (Park's Pouch).
This is when the open end of the healthy ileum is diverted to the surface of the abdomen and secured there to form a new exit for waste matter.
A natural defence mechanism of the body in which blood rushes to any site of damage or infection leading to reddening, swelling and pain. The area is usually hot to touch.
Painful inflammation of the eyes.
An agent that acts to cause emptying of the bowel. This may be by purging (irritating the lining) or increasing the volume of stool (bulking).
A term used to describe any structural abnormality in the body.
White cells in the blood which help fight infection.
An increase in the number of circulating white cells in the blood.
A decrease in the amount of circulating white cells in the blood.
A white, slimy lubricant produced by the intestines. It is found in excess in the stools of patients with colitis.
Accumulation (build up) of excessive amounts of fluid in the tissues resulting in swelling.
Thinning of the bones due to calcium loss. May be caused by long-term use of steroids or low levels of oestrogen.
Harmful organism causing disease.
The study of the cause of disease.
An abnormal opening (hole) in the bowel wall which causes the contents of the bowel to spill into the normally sterile abdominal cavity.
The membrane lining the abdominal cavity.
Inflammation of the peritoneum, often due to a perforation.
Inflammation of an ileo-anal pouch.
A protruding growth from mucous membrane, (e.g. colonic polyp - in the colon).
Treatment to prevent a disease occurring before it has started.
Further up the bowel towards the mouth.
A type of chronic skin ulceration which sometimes occurs on the limbs of people with inflammatory bowel disease.
The doctor who interprets X-Ray pictures to make a diagnosis.
The lower 20cm of the large intestine, above the anus.
Return of disease activity.
A lessening of symptoms of the disease and return to good health.
The portion of the colon shaped like a letter 'S' or 'C' extending from the descending colon to the rectum.
Inspection of the sigmoid colon with an illuminated telescope called a sigmoidoscope.
Areas of normal bowel mucosa between areas of inflamed bowel mucosa (seen in Crohn's disease).
The portion of the colon at which the transverse and the descending colon meet, below the spleen.
Presence of excess fat in the stools.
The narrowing of a portion of the bowel.
A bullet-shaped solid medication put into the rectum.
Persistent urge to empty the bowel caused by an inflamed rectum.
The last part of the ileum joining the caecum via the ileo-caecal valve.
A dilatation (swelling) of the colon which may led to perforation, usually in a very severe attack of ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease. Urgent surgery is almost always performed.
The portion of bowel between the hepatic and the splenic flexures.
An abnormal growth which may be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancer).
Use of high-pitched sound waves to produce pictures of organs on a screen for diagnostic purposes, by passing a transducer with conducting jelly over a specified body cavity, (e.g. the abdomen - abdominal ultrasound).