Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease affecting the large intestine. This illness is classified as an autoimmune disorder disrupting the digestive and immune systems of the body. The immune system becomes confused by attacking the microorganisms in the digestive tract that aid the digestion process causing severe inflammation that is mainly restricted to the colon itself. This inflammation begins in the mucous lining of the large intestines leaving ulcers that become infected over time. If left untreated, these ulcers can become abscessed and rupture requiring the need for emergency surgery of a colectomy.
One must understand the symptoms of ulcerative colitis to develop a better prognosis of the disease in question. The illness begins as inflammations lining the inside of the colon that develop into ulcers which can lead to explosive diarrhea and intestinal bleeding. Several stages of abdominal pain that may include mild to severe stomach cramps also accompany this disorder. Fatigue, fever and extreme weight loss are also complicated by a weakened immune system that has been compromised.
The length of the area involved will also dictate the treatment remedies available. Ulcerative colitis' severity depends mainly on the patients bowel movements which can range from four stools per day to ten and beyond. Some affected regions are limited to the rectum, while others extend to the ileum which may require surgery. Persons with ulcerative colitis usually have periods with no flare ups. Usually this depends heavily on the extent and location of the disease. This illness has been known to adversely affect the persons quality of life with the constant flare ups of diarrhea and abdominal pain leaving many to seek remedies for their disease.
Standard treatment options for ulcerative colitis vary depending on the severity and location of the illness at hand. The main objective is to induce remission without harm to the patient. Modern medicine uses many different drugs for this task that have altering side effects. Anti-inflammatory drugs are used to reduce swelling inside the mucous lining while antibiotics control and relieve infections and keep them from spreading to other parts of the colon. Other drugs used in this treatment are known as immunosuppressives. They function by limiting the operation of the immune system, which in turn poses great health risk to the patient by exposing them to possible infections putting other organs and systems in danger. Anti-inflammatory drugs have mild to severe side effects such as headache, fever, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and a lower white blood cell count.
If drugs are not successful in treating extreme cases then removal of the large intestine is generally considered a last resort. In view of all the standard treatment options proposed by hospitals and cancer centers alike, one must also consider the use of natural therapies, sometimes referred as alternative therapies. There are other alternative therapies that have been shown to produce major improvements in symptoms with no dangerous side effects. Some of these remedies are diets based on natural foods and simply require proper food combining of certain high fiber raw fruits, vegetables and whole grains cereals.
These diets also prohibit the intake of processed junk food that is loaded with chemical toxins that can upset the colons chemical balance. Along with the diet treatment, herbal plants and probiotic cultures are taken as well to provide correct balance in the intestinal flora to help rebuild the immune system and aid proper digestion.
To eliminate the symptoms of ulcerative colitis, one must understand the full treatment options and take a proactive approach to finding alternative remedies that are safe and effective.