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Crohn’s Disease

When you have Crohn’s disease, your immune system attacks your intestines or other parts of your digestive tract. Crohn’s has no cure, but doctors at Rush can help those who have it manage their disease and live full lives.

Crohn's disease: what you should know

  • Crohn’s is a common type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which is not the same as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
  • While the causes of Crohn’s remain unknown, researchers have identified some risk factors. People who smoke, people younger than 35 and people of Eastern European Jewish descent all have an increased risk of developing Crohn’s.
  • Food needs and sensitivities vary among people with Crohn’s. Experts at Rush can help you figure out a diet that works for you.

How can I get help for Crohn’s disease?

These are the most common symptoms of Crohn’s disease:

Having these symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you have Crohn’s. Many other conditions have similar symptoms.

Experts at Rush can draw on their decades of experience to find the root of your problem. We welcome patients seeking second opinions.

Care for Crohn’s disease at Rush

If you have been diagnosed with Crohn’s, your care at Rush might include one or more of the following:

  • Help with making changes to your diet
  • Medications to help your pain
  • Antibiotics to treat infected fistulas caused by Crohn’s
  • Medications to suppress your immune system so that it does not attack your digestive tract
  • Biologic therapies to fight Crohn’s that has not responded well to other treatments.
  • Surgery to remove damaged portions of your digestive tract (recommended for about two-thirds of people with Crohn’s)
  • Counseling to help you cope with the challenges of having Crohn’s

Why choose Rush for Crohn's disease care

  • Rush is a leader in Crohn’s research. Doctors here are conducting the only clinical trial in the U.S. that aims to study the effects of specially designed diets on Crohn’s symptoms.
  • Colon and rectal surgeons at Rush have helped pioneer several minimally invasive techniques, including colorectal laparoscopy and intestinal robotic surgery. These techniques, which involve smaller incisions, can lead to less pain and shorter recovery times.
  • Rush has an infusion room on site for people who need biologic therapies, which you get through an IV. This means you can see your doctor and get your infusion treatment in a single visit.
  • Rush has psychologists who specialize in helping people cope with gastrointestinal diseases. 

Departments and programs that treat this condition