If you have frequent diarrhea, abdominal pain, and rectal bleeding, you may have colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease. At Los Angeles Integrative Gastroenterology & Nutrition in Century City, Farshid Sam Rahbar, MD, FACP, ABIHM, diagnoses and treats colitis and other inflammatory bowel diseases with a blend of Western and integrative medicine designed to heal your body and restore your overall health. Call or make an appointment online today.
Colitis Q & A
Q: What is colitis?
A: Colitis, also called ulcerative colitis, is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic inflammation and sores (ulcers) in the lining of your large intestine. Colitis usually develops slowly, and if it goes untreated, it can lead to debilitating symptoms and life-threatening complications such as hemorrhages, a perforated colon, bone loss, and an increased risk of colon cancer.
Some of the common symptoms of colitis include:
- Diarrhea, often with blood or pus
- Abdominal and rectal pain and cramping
- Rectal bleeding
- Urgent need for a bowel movement
- Unexplained weight loss
You should make an appointment with Dr. Rahbar at Los Angeles Integrative Gastroenterology & Nutrition if you find blood in your stool, have ongoing diarrhea that doesn’t respond to over-the-counter medications, or have severe abdominal pain.
Q: What causes colitis?
A: Doctors and medical researchers don’t fully understand the causes of colitis, although there are several contributing factors. For example, if you have a family history of inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease, you’re more likely to develop the condition.
Similarly, if you have an autoimmune disease or other immunological problem, your body may mistakenly attack the cells lining your digestive tract.
Q: How is colitis diagnosed?
A: At Los Angeles Integrative Gastroenterology & Nutrition, Dr. Rahbar and his team use comprehensive exams and testing to diagnose colitis.
In addition to testing blood and stool samples, Dr. Rahbar may use other diagnostic tools including colonoscopy, flexible sigmoidoscopy, X-rays, and CT scans to examine the inside of your colon for signs of inflammation and ulcers.
Q: How is colitis treated?
A: At Los Angeles Integrative Gastroenterology & Nutrition, Dr. Rahbar and his team combine the best of Western medicine with integrative therapies to provide highly customized treatments for colitis.
For example, he may combine medication to decrease inflammation or immune system suppressants with dietary adjustments and nutritional supplements. Also, colitis can interfere with the way your body absorbs vitamins and minerals, so Dr. Rahbar may prescribe supplements including B12, vitamin D, calcium, and iron to ensure you protect and improve your overall health while undergoing treatment for colitis.
You may also benefit from a probiotic to restore balance in your digestive tract.
Call Los Angeles Integrative Gastroenterology & Nutrition or make an appointment online today for expert diagnosis and treatment of colitis and other inflammatory bowel diseases.