Inflammatory Bowel Disease Specialist

Fifth Avenue GI

Gastroenterologists located in Upper East Side, New York, NY

Inflammatory bowel disease is a disease impacting the digestive tract. It causes chronic inflammation leading to significant pain, diarrhea, unintended weight loss, and other problems. East Harlem and Upper East Side, New York, patients who need symptom relief can depend on the gastroenterology team at Fifth Avenue GI for diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing support for inflammatory bowel disease and other gastrointestinal issues.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Q & A

What is inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease can refer to either ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease. Both are disorders resulting from chronic inflammation within the digestive tract.

Ulcerative colitis impacts the lining of the large intestine and the rectum. The inflammation can become severe enough to cause sores.

Crohn's disease typically impacts the small intestine lining, but it may also affect the large intestine or any other part of the digestive tract.

What are the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease, whether ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease, can cause the same type of symptoms. These include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Cramping
  • Abdominal pain
  • Exhaustion
  • Weight loss, even though you haven't been trying to lose weight
  • Fever

These symptoms can be quite severe, to the point that they're debilitating for many patients. If you're dealing with inflammatory bowel disease, it's imperative that you get help from one of the experienced gastroenterologists at Fifth Avenue GI.

Who is at risk for inflammatory bowel disease?

Although anyone can get inflammatory bowel disease, it occurs most often in patients under the age of 30. It happens most often in Caucasian patients, but Ashkenazi Jewish patients have an exceptionally high risk for it. If you have a family history of inflammatory bowel disease, you may be more likely to develop it yourself.

Cigarette smoking is a risk factor that's within your control. The other controllable risk factor is the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicine (NSAIDs). Regular use of medications like Advil and Motrin can increase your risk for inflammatory bowel disease, and they can worsen symptoms if you already have the disease.

How does your gastroenterologist treat inflammatory bowel disease?

Your Fifth Avenue GI gastroenterologist performs a thorough exam, which includes diagnostic testing to confirm the exact type of inflammatory bowel disease that you have. That allows your gastroenterologist to determine the optimal treatment approach.

Treatment options for inflammatory bowel disease may include:

  • Lifestyle change: dietary changes as recommended by your gastroenterologist
  • Medication: antibiotics, anti-diarrheal medicine, steroid medicines, biologic medicines, or immunomodulator medicines
  • Surgery: colostomy, colectomy, ileostomy, bowel resection, or proctocolectomy

Fifth Avenue GI is here to help with inflammatory bowel disease and all your other gastrointestinal needs. Make an appointment online now to see one of our gastroenterologists at your convenience!