Gastrointestinal disorders and diseases

Crohn’s disease is characterized by chronic inflammation of the intestine, which can affect the entire gastrointestinal tract, from the mouth to the anus. In about 90% of cases, the disease mostly affects the last part of the small intestine (ileum) and the colon.
Ulcers resulting from inflammation, if not treated, can lead to intestinal narrowing (stenosis) or deepen to “pierce” the intestine and touch surrounding organs (fistulas). Such complications often require surgical treatment, although the disease can return to the site where surgical resection is performed.
What are the causes of Crohn’s disease?
The causes of the disease are not known. It seems that a combination of factors, such as genetic predisposition, environmental factors, cigarette smoking, and alterations in the intestinal bacterial flora and immune response, can trigger intestinal inflammation. In fact, the cells of the immune system “attack” the intestine continuously and help perpetuate inflammation. Although some genes appear to be involved, it is not a hereditary or genetic disease.