Named after the doctor who described the disease, Dr. Burrill B. Crohn, Crohn's disease is a chronic inflammatory bowel disease affecting the gastrointestinal tract. While similar to ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease is not the same condition. An estimated 700,000 Americans suffer from this condition; it affects men and women, as well as any age group. The most commonly affected age group is between 15 and 35 years old.
Currently, there is no cure for Crohn's disease but there are viable options for treating the painful symptoms, such as chiropractic care.
Symptoms of Crohn's Disease
Typically, Crohn's causes inflammation along the lining of the bowel tissues, specifically at the end of the small bowel (called the ileum) and the beginning of the colon. This inflammation can be extremely painful resulting in abdominal pain, severe and persistent diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition.
Consider Conservative Treatment
While there is no known cure for Crohn's, there are several methods of treatment. The most common treatment path is drug therapy and, in some cases, surgery. As chiropractors, we recommend choosing conservative, non-invasive forms of treatment first, whenever possible.
Complementary Medicine, Chiropractic and Crohn's Disease
Multiple cross-sectional surveys have revealed that 51 percent of patients with inflammatory bowel disease use complementary medicine for treating their illness. These studies indicate an increase in people seeking out alternative treatment methods.
A 2007 study on Crohn's disease patients found that 12 of the 17 participants who received spinal adjustments "showed long-term and stable remission of their symptoms." They also found "that vertebral subluxation is a common and characteristic finding in patients with allergies and Crohn's disease."
A 2003 case study by Dr. Charles L. Blum, reports a 32-year-old female patient suffering from inflammatory bowel disease was relieved of this chronic condition following chiropractic treatment.
Known for their anti-inflammatory properties, omega-3 fatty acids may play a positive role in treating the symptoms of Crohn's disease. A 1996 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that Crohn's patients taking fish oil were twice as likely to remain in remission than those who took a placebo.
Make an appointment to talk to a chiropractic doctor about chiropractic and Crohn's disease.
Read on to learn more:
Long Term Remission and Alleviation of Symptoms in Allergy and Crohn's Disease Patients Following Spinal Adjustment for Reduction of Vertebral Subluxations, Journal of Vertebral Subluxations Research, Jul. 2007
Complementary medicine use by patients with inflammatory bowel disease, The American Journal of Gastroenterology, 1998
An international survey of the use and attitudes regarding alternative medicine by patients with inflammatory bowel disease, The American Journal of Gastroenterology, Aug. 1998
The Resolution of Chronic Colitis with Chiropractic Care Leading to Increased Fertility, Journal of Vertebral Subluxations Research, Aug. 2003
Effect of an Enteric-Coated Fish-Oil Preparation on Relapses in Crohn's Disease, The New England Journal of Medicine, June 1996