Ulcerative Colitis

Let's Talk About Ulcerative Colitis

We’ve got the doctor-approved details on the causes, symptoms, treatments, and a jillion other facts and tips that can make life with UC easier.

    Our Pro PanelUlcerative Colitis

    We went to some of the nation’s top RA experts to bring you the most scientific and up-to-date information possible.

    Aline J Charabaty Pishvaian

    Aline Charabaty Pishvaian, M.D.Director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center

    Sibley Memorial Hospital
    Washington, D.C.
    Jason Schairer MD

    Jason Schairer, M.D.Senior Staff Gastroenterologist

    Henry Ford Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center
    Neilanjan Nandi

    Neilanjan Nandi, M.D.Director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center

    Drexel University School of Medicine
    Ulcerative Colitis statistics: age of diagnosis, UC affects men and women equally, number of Americans with UC, percentage of patients with a family history of IBD, percentage of patients who relapse every year
    Nikki Cagle
    close up of couple cooking
    Finding Your Way Forward

    The Ulcerative Colitis Cooking Club!

    Food shouldn't have to be a drag when you have ulcerative colitis. We've got your diet for flare days and feel-good days covered with easy recipe ideas for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (snacks, too!).

    Common Ulcerative Colitis Treatments include 5-ASAS, steroids, immonumdulators, biologics
    Nikki Cagle
    Self-Care Tips for Ulcerative Colitis include exercise, sleep, avoiding food triggers, and therapy
    Nikki Cagle

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    Frequently Asked QuestionsUlcerative Colitis

    Ulcerative colitis v. Crohn's disease: What's the difference?

    UC and Crohn's are the two main types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). While they do share many symptoms in common, they are distinct diseases. Ulcerative colitis mainly affects only the colon and/or rectum while Crohn's may impact any part of the entire digestive tract.

    Can you cure UC permanently?

    The conversation around whether you can "cure" UC is hotly debated. Some say the only true cure is a proctocolectomy, which is surgery that removes your colon and rectum completely. However, some symptoms can persist even after surgery. While a total cure may not be possible, the good news is it's possible to reach remission (meaning you have few or no symptoms) with the right treatment.

    What is the difference between ulcerative colitis and just plain colitis?

    The term colitis simply refers to inflammation in your colon. It can result from things like bacterial or viral infection or a parasite, but the inflammation usually goes away once your immune system fights off the attacker. Ulcerative colitis, on the other hand, is chronic, meaning the inflammation is long-lasting and related to a serious immune system problem.

    What diet should I follow if I have ulcerative colitis?

    There's no such thing as a one-size-fits-all "ulcerative colitis diet." That said, most experts recommend a plant-based, Mediterranean diet, along with working with a registered dietitian to help you come up with a meal plan that works for you and your symptoms.

    Lara DeSanto

    Lara DeSanto


    Lara DeSanto is a former editor of HealthCentral, where she regularly covered digestive health, sexual health, and cancer. She's now a frequent contributor to the site.