In general, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) encompasses a set of gastrointestinal diseases where parts of the digestive tract are chronically inflamed by a dysfunctional interaction immune system. The exact cause yet remains uncertain. Hereditary factors and an abnormal interaction between microorganisms and the immune system are felt to play a role.
Common symptoms of IBD are diarrhea, abdominal pain, blood in stool, fever, fatigue, weight loss and loss of appetite.
Crohn’s disease is one major subtype of IBD. By definition, inflammation can occur anywhere from the mouth to the anorectal region, though the most common areas involve the small and large intestine. Ulcerative colitis is the other major subtype where inflammation is limited to the large intestine.