Signs, symptoms and treatment of Crohn's Disease in children

Pediatrician Dan Thomas, MD Gastroenterology & Nutrition, shares advice for parents on the signs, symptoms, and treatments of Crohn's Disease in children
Crohn's Disease Signs, Symptoms And Treatments In Children
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Signs, symptoms and treatment of Crohn's Disease in children

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Chron's Disease is a very serious disorder that occurs both in adults and childhood. It's thought that there might be as many as a million people now in the United States have Chron's Disease. Another name for it is Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or IBD, not to be confused with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS. The two are totally different in their impact and seriousness of this. Chron's Disease, if there's a million people who are thought to have Chron's Disease in the United States, about a third of these people are diagnosed in childhood. The seriousness of the Chron's Disease is that this is a disabling disorder of the digestive system but also other parts of the body that causes gastrointestinal bleeding, anemia, severe localized pain, malnutrition, stunted growth, and other myriad of medical problems. It has to be diagnosed properly, and the diagnosis sometimes can be delayed in childhood because it just doesn't start one day, and you diagnose it the next day. It takes a period of time for these symptoms to get worse and worse for somebody to seek medical attention. You should have your antennaes or your radar up if you think your child might have IBD or Chron's Disease, especially if there's a family member who has IBD or Chron's Disease, a first degree relative, and these symptoms start to occur. There's some screening tests and other tests that you can do to diagnose Chron's Disease. In terms of treatment, the treatment is dependent on the patient and how sever the Chron's Disease. Anywhere from surgery and some cases very powerful medicines that affect immune system that tone down or quiet the body's inflammatory response, immune response, because it is what's called an auto-immune disorder that the body basically attacks itself with a focus on the GI track to other dietary measures and topical anti-inflammatory medications what calm or quiet the inflammatory process. And this is often a very lifelong problem so it is necessary for the child to be followed by a specialist, a gastroenterologist in his area, with expertise and experience taking care of this problem.

Pediatrician Dan Thomas, MD Gastroenterology & Nutrition, shares advice for parents on the signs, symptoms, and treatments of Crohn's Disease in children

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Dan Thomas, MD

Pediatrician, Gastroenterology & Nutrition, Children's Hospital Los Angeles

Dr. Dan Thomas is the Head of the Division of Gastroenterology and Nutrition, and Medical Director of Liver and Small Bowel Transplantation at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Dr. Thomas presently serves on the Editorial Review Board of Pediatrics in Review and is on the Committee on Nutrition of the American Academy of Pediatrics. His primary clinical and academic interests include the care and study of children with congenital or acquired intestinal, pancreatic and hepatobiliary disorders.

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