Conditions and Treatments

Inflammatory bowel disease can be painful and disruptive to your daily routine. At Henry Ford Health System, our specialists in digestive disorders are leaders in treating IBD and related conditions.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): Conditions we treat

Our gastroenterologists (specialists in treating disorders of the digestive tract) work with you to provide rapid, accurate diagnoses and comprehensive treatment for all types of IBD, including:

  • Ulcerative colitis: This chronic disease causes inflammation and ulcers (open sores) in the innermost lining of your large intestine (colon) and rectum. Learn more about ulcerative colitis.
  • Crohn’s disease: Chronic inflammation that can occur anywhere along the digestive tract (from the mouth to the rectum). Crohn’s disease often develops in the lining of the intestines (small, large or both) and can go deep into the tissues. The disorder most commonly affects the end of the small intestine.
  • Pouchitis: A complication of ulcerative colitis treatment, this condition is inflammation that develops in the lining of a surgically created pouch in the colon.
  • Cuffitis: Also a complication of treatment, cuffitis is inflammation that develops in the original colon tissue that is left after treatment for ulcerative colitis.
  • Microscopic colitis: This condition is inflammation that physicians can see only with a microscope. Microscopic colitis occurs in the large intestine and causes chronic diarrhea and weight loss

Nonsurgical treatment options for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

We offer the latest, most advanced nonsurgical options to treat IBD, with the goal of reducing the inflammation that triggers symptoms. Depending on your specific case, our treatment options include one or more of the following:

  • Medications: Many patients living with IBD can successfully manage the condition with medications, especially in its early stages.
  • Nutrition management: Eating a healthy diet can relieve IBD symptoms, replace nutrients lost because of long-term diarrhea and promote healing in the intestines.
  • Preventive care: We provide regular health checks to monitor your health and prevent possible IBD complications. Our checks include:
    • Nutritional status and monitoring of vitamins
    • Cancer screening
    • Bone health
    • Vaccination status

Henry Ford: Surgery for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Depending on the type of IBD you have and your overall health, surgery may be your best treatment option. At Henry Ford, our gastrointestinal surgeons have years of experience in effective surgery to eliminate IBD symptoms.

If nonsurgical treatment is not bringing you the results you need, we discuss your options for surgery. Our goal is to provide the most benefit and long-term relief of symptoms.

Our surgical options include:

  • Minimally invasive surgery: Our experts can remove diseased parts of your colon. Minimally invasive bowel surgery:
    • Is less painful
    • Offers a shorter recovery time
    • Produces less scarring
    • Has less risk of infection
  • Ileal pouch surgery: This procedure, for patients with ulcerative colitis, leaves the sphincter (ring of muscle in the anus that closes the opening) intact, allowing for normal bowel movements.
  • Strictureplasty: This procedure for patients with Crohn’s disease widens sections in the small intestine that have narrowed because of scar tissue.
  • Colectomy: In this procedure, surgeons remove the entire colon if medications are not effectively controlling your symptoms.
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