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DIGESTIVE SYSTEM the gastrointestinal tract (GI tract), digestive tract, guts or gut is the system of organs within multicellular organisms that takes in food, digests it to extract energy and nutrients, and expels the remaining matter. The major functions of the gastrointestinal tract are ingestion, digestion, absorption, and defecation INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASES The intestine becomes inflamed , causing recurring abdominal cramps and diarrhea. Chronic Recurrent Occur on young adults between ages 15 to 30 years Long period of remission Unknown cure Etiology Genetic predisposition Environmental conditions Defects in immune regulation Bacterial in origin Destructive enzymes Lack of protective substances in the bowel Emotional disturbances Common types of IBD Crohn’s Disease is an inflammatory disease of the intestines that may affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract from anus to mouth, causing a wide variety of symptoms It can develop discontinously without sequence and skipping in all alimentary tract , terminal ileum. Peak onset is between ages 10 and 30 Cause is unknown but possible factors are autoimmune, genetics , infectious agents and environmental stress. Lessions extend to all thickness of the bowel wall and are prone to fistula formation. Lesion have cobblestone appearance with sections on normal mucosa between lesions called skip lesions Children with Crohn’s disease may suffer delayed development and stunted growth. Diagnosed by colonoscopy : characteristic of aphthoid ulcers showing areas of ulceration , narrowing, strictures and fistulas Signs and Symptoms Diarrhea – 5 to g liquid semiformed stools/day Abdominal pain in right lower quadrant Fever Fatigue Malaise Weight loss Ulcerative Colitis is a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Ulcerative colitis is a form of colitis, a disease of the intestine, specifically the large intestine or colon, that includes characteristic ulcers, or open sores, in the colon. Cause is unknown but may have relationship to stress , genetics , infections and dietary factors Diagnosed by sigmoidoscopy: characteristic edmatous, friable mucosa with granular appearance with evident of crypt abscesses Signs and Symptoms Diarrhea – 10 to 20 liquid stools per day often containing blood and sometimes mucu abdominal pain often in the lower right area Rectal bleeding may be serious and persistent leading to anemia weight loss, Diagnostic Exams A complete blood count is done to check for anemia; thrombocytosis, a high platelet count, is occasionally seen Electrolyte studies and renal function tests are done, as chronic diarrhea may be associated with hypokalemia, hypomagnesemia and pre-renal failure. Liver function tests are performed to screen for bile duct involvement: primary sclerosing cholangitis. X-ray Urinalysis Stool culture, to rule out parasites and infectious causes. Erythrocyte sedimentation rate can be measured, with an elevated sedimentation rate indicating that an inflammatory process is present. C-reactive protein can be measured, with an elevated level being another indication of inflammation.