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Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic

Do you struggle with abdominal pain? The Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic at University Medical Center New Orleans is designed with you in mind.
Our multidisciplinary team includes experts in adult gastroenterology, surgery, pathology, radiology, nutrition, and psychiatry.

About inflammatory bowel disease

Inflammatory bowel disease is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. It is divided into two different conditions:

  • Crohn’s disease is a condition that can cause inflammation throughout the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the rectum.
  • Ulcerative colitis is a condition in which only the colon and rectum experience inflammation.

Causes and symptoms of IBD

Although research is ongoing, we still do not know the exact causes of IBD. Genetics, your overall health, and certain lifestyle factors seem to contribute to the development of IBD.
Symptoms of IBD will depend on the type you have and the location of the inflammation in your digestive tract and may include:

  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Blood in the stool
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Urgent need to have a bowel movement
  • Weight loss

Diagnosis of IBD

When you visit the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic, we will examine your case thoroughly to get an accurate diagnosis. In addition to looking at your family medical history, personal medical history, and general health, we will perform blood work, take stool samples and order advanced imaging tests.
After preliminary testing, your physician may request an endoscopy or colonoscopy. These outpatient procedures involve inserting a small tube with a camera down your esophagus or into your rectum and colon, respectively, to see what’s going on. Your provider may also take tissue samples to biopsy during this procedure. (Don’t worry, you will be under anesthesia during this.)

IBD treatment

The Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic uses a cooperative team approach between a patient and their doctors to create a treatment plan. While every case is different—because every patient is different—our end goals are to relieve symptoms and improve your quality of life.
Your doctor is likely to prescribe medications to treat your ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease. However, some patients may require surgery.
Lifestyle changes, including eating a healthy diet, reducing stress, getting regular exercise and quitting smoking, are also important parts of your IBD treatment.

Living with IBD

At University Medical Center New Orleans, we understand the difficulty that comes with living with IBD. The staff at the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic works hard to provide support for IBD patients, so you can be both physically and emotionally healthy. We provide referrals to therapists, access to support groups and opportunities for further education.

If you’re ready to get a diagnosis or treatment for possible IBD, we are here to help. However, you will need a referral to the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinic from a gastroenterologist. We can help you find a gastroenterologist if you don’t have one.

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