Crohn’s disease is part of a group of digestive conditions called inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Crohn’s most commonly affects the end of the small intestine called the ileum, but it can affect any part of the digestive tract. As many as 700,000 Americans may be affected by Crohn’s, according to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America.
This chronic condition is an autoimmune disease, meaning that your immune system mistakenly attacks cells in your own body that it thinks are foreign invaders. The most common Crohn’s symptoms are abdominal pain, diarrhea, rectal bleeding, weight loss, and fever. “Treatment depends on the symptoms and can include topical pain relievers, immunosuppressants, and surgery,” Dr. Bamji says.