Ulcerative Colitis

Colon Cancer and Ulcerative Colitis

About 5 percent of people with ulcerative colitis go on to develop colon cancer. The risk of cancer increases with the length of time a person has had ulcerative colitis and how much of the colon is affected by the disease. For example, if only the lower colon and rectum are involved, the risk of cancer is no higher than normal. However, if the entire colon is involved, the risk of cancer may be as much as 32 times the normal rate.
(Click Ulcerative Colitis and Colon Cancer for a more in-depth look at this topic.)

Progression of the Disease

The only cure for ulcerative colitis, natural or otherwise (see Natural Cures for Ulcerative Colitis), is surgery to remove the colon and rectum. But by seeing your healthcare professional for regular exams and treatment, and taking an active role in relieving your symptoms, you may be able to keep ulcerative colitis from interfering with your daily life.

Inflammatory Bowel Diseases and Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The term "inflammatory bowel disease" refers to diseases that cause inflammation in the small intestine and colon. Ulcerative colitis can be difficult to diagnose because its symptoms are similar to the symptoms of other intestinal disorders, as well as to the symptoms of another type of IBD called Crohn's disease.
Crohn's disease differs from ulcerative colitis in several ways. For example, Crohn's disease causes inflammation deeper within the intestinal wall, which can lead to certain types of complications. These complications can include a bowel obstruction or fistula (an abnormal tunnel). Also, Crohn's disease usually occurs in the small intestine -- though it can occur anywhere in the digestive tract, from the mouth to the anus. In comparison, ulcerative colitis usually occurs in the large intestine and rectum.
(Click Ulcerative Colitis Versus Crohn's Disease to learn other differences between these two types of inflammatory bowel disease.)

Information on Ulcerative Colitis

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