loose motions, blood with bowel movements, mucous from the bottom, weight loss, need to rush to the toilet.
blood tests, stool analysis to rule out infection, colonoscopy.
- UC can behave in a variety of ways from very occasional, very mild flare ups ranging through to severe disease which can occasionally require emergency surgery.
- most cases can be managed with drugs. These drugs are given either as tablets, suppositories directly into the bottom, enemas, or in more severe cases by intra-venous injection.
- UC generally requires long term follow up.
- sometimes UC can be associated with other conditions eg skin, eye, joint or liver problems.
- there is a small but definite risk of bowel cancer developing as a complication of UC. This risk increases with increasing duration of the disease, the severity and extent of the inflammation and possible development of liver related disease (primary sclerosing cholangitis).
- surgery is typically required if the disease fails to be controlled with drugs in either the short term or the long term, or if there is felt to be a real risk of bowel cancer developing.
- surgery for UC is a major undertaking as it generally requires all the large bowel to removed. If such surgery is required, some patients are suitable for a ‘pouch operation’ and some might be advised to have a permanent ileostomy.