Colon Disease


What is the Colon?

The Colon is also called the large intestine. The Ileum (last part of the small intestine) connects to the Cecum (first part of the colon) in the lower right abdomen. The rest of the colon is divided into four parts:

  • The ascending colon travels up the right side of the abdomen.

  • The transverse colon runs across the abdomen.

  • The descending colon travels down the left abdomen.

  • The sigmoid colon is a short curving of the colon, just before the rectum.

The function of a colon helps remove water, salt, and some nutrients forming stool.

Muscles line the colon's walls, squeezing its contents along. Billions of bacteria coat the colon and its contents, living in a healthy balance with the body.

What are the problems/diseases that can affect the Colon?

1) Colitis

Inflammation of the colon, inflammatory bowel disease or infections are the most common causes. Typically, some of the common signs includes abdominal pain, cramp, diarrhea (one of the hallmark symptoms of colitis) with or without blood in the stool. Some of the more serious symptoms may include fever, chills, fatigue, eye inflammation and much more.

Treatment for ulcerative colitis depends mainly on how bad the disease is. It usually includes medicines and changes in diet. A few people have symptoms that are long-lasting and severe, in some cases requiring more medicines or surgery.

2) Diverticulosis

Small weak areas in the colon's muscular wall allow the colon's lining to protrude through, forming tiny pouches called diverticuli. Diverticuli usually cause no problems, but can bleed or become inflamed or infected.​

This disease in particular doesn't develop visible symptoms but over time, some people may develop an infection in the pouches. Doctors would suggest the term as painful diverticular disease that is likely caused by irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) that may cause diarrhea and cramping abdominal pain.

The best way to treat diverticulosis is to avoid constipation. Eating a healthy diet and excising may help prevent Diverticulosis. Schedule time each day for a bowel movement. Having a daily routine may help. Take your time and do not strain when you are having a bowel movement.

Source: Safebee

3) Diverticulitis

When diverticuli become inflamed or infected, diverticulitis results. Abdominal pain, fever, and constipation are some of the common symptoms. When you visit the doctor, the doctor may perform physical exam that includes x-ray, scanning and ultrasound testing. The best prevention is to eat a high-fiber diet that is low in fat and red meat and to have high intake of water.

Source: Style Samba

4) Colon bleeding

Multiple potential colon problems can cause bleeding. Rapid bleeding is visible in the stool, but very slow bleeding might not be.​

Blood are highly associated with this disease. The amount of bleeding and colour determines how serious is the problem. The colour varies from bright red to dark blood or black with the stool followed by vomit that looks like "coffee-grounds". If you are constantly fatigue and weak, it may also be one of the signs. Prevention measures vary depending on the cause of the Colon bleeding.

5) Inflammatory bowel disease

A name for either Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. Both conditions can cause colon inflammation (colitis). The common signs are cramps, irregular bowel habits passage of mucus without blood or pus, weight loss, fatigue, bowel movement abnormalities and more.

No known dietary or lifestyle changes prevent inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and no known dietary substances have been consistently shown to cause activation of IBD. Tobacco use has been linked to increases in the number and severity of flares of Crohn disease, and smoking cessation can help achieve remission in patients with Crohn disease. Lactose intolerance is common in persons with Crohn disease or ulcerative colitis and can mimic symptoms of IBD.

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6) Diarrhea

Stools that are frequent, loose, or watery are commonly called diarrhea. Most diarrhea is due to self-limited, mild infections of the colon or small intestine.

Source: Medical news today

You know that it’s diarrhea when you pass loose, watery stool two to three times a day or more. These other symptoms can also accompany diarrhea such as cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, fever and vomiting.

The most important way to avoid diarrhea is to avoid coming into contact with infectious agents that can cause it. This means that good hand washing and hygiene are very important.

7) Salmonellosis

The bacteria Salmonella can contaminate food and infect the intestine. Salmonella causes diarrhea and stomach cramps, which usually resolve without treatment.

Symptoms of salmonellosis include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps. They develop 12 to 72 hours after infection, and the illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days. Most people recover without treatment. A small number of people who are infected with salmonellosis develop Reiter's syndrome, a disease that can last for months or years and can lead to chronic arthritis

The reason for the development of Salmonellosis are caused by raw foods such as raw or undercooked eggs that are found in our food daily. Cook foods until they are well done.

8) Shigellosis.

The bacteria Shigella can contaminate food and invade the colon. Symptoms include fever, stomach cramps, and diarrhea, which may be bloody. Shigellosis usually lasts 5 to 7 days. Some people who are infected may have no symptoms at all but may still spread shigellosis to others.

Source: CDC

Shigellosis is usually treated with antibiotics. But some types of Shigella bacteria are not killed by antibiotics because using antibiotics can make these bacteria even more resistant, mild cases of shigellosis are often not treated with antibiotics. The best way to avoid having Shigellosis is to take care of your hygiene the best you can possibly do. You can help prevent the spread of shigellosis by washing your hands frequently and carefully with soap.

9) Travelers' diarrhea.

Many different bacteria commonly contaminate water or food in developing countries. Loose stools, sometimes with nausea and fever, are symptoms. Traveler's diarrhea usually lasts from 3 to 7 days is rarely life threatening. One of the first few symptoms is abrupt onset of diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and bloating.

Source: How rid

Avoid obesity and weight gain around the midsection. You can avoid Traveler's diarrhea by excising regularly and eating more of vegetables and fruits. Taking of calcium and Vitamin D are recommended.

10) Colon polyps

Polyps are small growths. Some of these develop into cancer, but it takes a long time. Removing them can prevent many colon cancers.

The most common symptom is rectal bleeding. Sometimes the bleeding may not be obvious (occult) and may only be discovered after doing a screening test for blood in the stool called a fecal occult blood test (FOBT). Unless colon polyps are large and cause bleeding or pain, the only way to know if you have polyps is to have one or more tests that explore the inside surface of your colon.

The best prevention is to lead a healthy lifestyle. Watch your body weight and avoid smoking or drinking at all cost.

11) Colon cancer

Cancer of the colon affects more than 100,000 Americans each year. Most colon cancer is preventable through regular screening.

In its early stage, colorectal cancer usually produces no symptoms. The most likely warning signs include changes in bowel movements, including persistent constipation or diarrhea, a feeling of not being able to empty the bowel completely, an urgency to move the bowels, rectal cramping, or rectal bleeding to name a few.

If you are found diagnosed with colon cancer, there may be necessary treatment such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and biological therapy.

Besides living healthily, many studies have found that people who regularly take aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and naproxen (Aleve), have a lower risk of colorectal cancer and polyps. Other, stronger studies have provided evidence that aspirin can help prevent the growth of polyps in people who were previously treated for early stages of colorectal cancer or who had polyps removed.

Think you have may have a Colon Problem? Better to be safe than sorry.

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