1.6 million Americans struggle with inflammatory bowel disease: A chronic, painful condition that can also sap a patient’s energy.
Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is the chronic inflammation of the digestive tract. There are 1.6 million Americans living with the disease. Some of the symptoms for IBD include diarrhea, fever and fatigue, reduced appetite and abdominal pain and cramping.
The cause of IBD is unknown, but diet and stress may aggravate the body. Risk factors for the disease include age, race, cigarette smoking and where you live. The disease is most common in those who live in the Midwest and Northeast.
Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease can create havoc on a person’s insides. These immune diseases cause the intestines to become inflamed and can cause a lot of pain.
In addition to traditional medicine and surgery, i-b-d specialists are exploring the connection between mind and gut and using alternative therapies to bring relief.
Marylou Wellbrock-Reeves, an IBD patient, has seen many doctors and specialists throughout her life-long struggle with Crohn’s disease.
“Some of my days are racked with such pain, it’s analogous to labor pain,” Marylou says.
Marylou Wellbrock-Reeves family is what keeps her going as she searches for the best way to live with a condition that has no cure.