Inflammatory bowel disease

Also known as IBD

Key points about inflammatory bowel disease

  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) mainly describes 2 long-term conditions that inflame your gut.
  • These are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative disease. Although there are no cures for these conditions, there are treatments that can help relieve your symptoms and stop them coming back.
  • Ulcerative colitis only affects the colon (large intestine). Crohn's disease can affect any part of the digestive system, from your mouth to your anus. There is also a rare form of IBD called microscopic colitis.
  • (external link)This page provides videos explaining the 2 conditions and links so you can find out more on the Healthify site. 
Virtual representation of the digestive system
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Video: What are Crohn's and Colitis?

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(Crohn's & Colitis UK, 2018)

Find out more about the causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment available for ulcerative colitis and for Crohn's disease.

You can also get support for IBD from Crohn's and Colitis New Zealand(external link) 

IBD is not the same as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which is sometimes called irritable bowel disease. IBS is a common condition that has symptoms such as abdominal cramping, bloating, diarrhoea and constipation. It is treated with lifestyle changes.

Video: Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

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(Health Knowledge Works & Mercury Films Inc, 2013)

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