Skip to main content

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Specialist

Digestive Disease Specialists

Gastroenterology Practice located in Moline, IL & Bettendorf, IA

Signs of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) include severe abdominal pain, fatigue, and other debilitating symptoms that can significantly decrease your overall quality of life. The team at Digestive Disease Specialists develops a personalized treatment strategy that relieves your symptoms and helps prevent the potentially life-threatening complications associated with IBD. Call their office in Moline, Illinois, or Davenport, Iowa, to schedule an evaluation or request an appointment online.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Q&A

What is inflammatory bowel disease?

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a general term that describes chronic inflammatory disorders that severely compromise the health of your digestive system, including:

Crohn’s disease

This type of IBD causes inflammation of the small or large intestine or both. Complications related to Crohn’s include bowel obstruction, malnutrition, and increased risk of colon cancer.

Ulcerative colitis

Ulcerative colitis affects your large intestine (colon) and rectum. It causes inflammation and open sores (ulcers) to form on the innermost lining of these structures.

Health complications related to untreated or poorly managed ulcerative colitis include:

  • Severe bleeding
  • Perforated colon
  • Dehydration
  • Increased risk of colon cancer
  • Rapid swelling of the colon (toxic megacolon)
  • Increased risk of blood clots in veins and arteries

While IBD isn’t typically fatal, complications such as toxic megacolon are quite serious and may lead to severe health complications.

What are the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease?

Symptoms can vary depending on which type of IBD you have. Generally, however, both Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis include:

  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Moderate to severe abdominal pain and cramping
  • Bloody stools
  • Reduced appetite and unintended weight loss

Your symptoms may begin gradually, worsen over a period of several days to weeks, and then fade for a time. People with IBD generally experience periods of remission that may last for weeks to months.

Other inflammatory conditions, including arthritis or uveitis (eye inflammation), may worsen or occur during a flare-up of IBD.

How do you treat inflammatory bowel disease?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for IBD. However, treatments that focus on reducing inflammation or the triggers that cause it often bring about long-term remission.

Your customized treatment plan may include prescription-strength anti-inflammatories, immune system suppressors, and biologics that neutralize inflammation-producing proteins in your bloodstream.

Your provider at Digestive Disease Specialists may also recommend antidiarrheal medication, pain relievers, and vitamins or supplements to support your nutritional health.

If you’re having difficulty maintaining a healthy weight, your provider may recommend parenteral nutrition to bypass your digestive system during an IBD flare-up.

It may take some trial and error to develop a strategy that effectively relieves your IBD symptoms, but your specialist continues to work with you throughout the process.

For IBD treatment that relieves your symptoms and restores your quality of life. Call the nearest office or request an appointment online.