Do You Know the Difference Between Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis?

APage | Jul 15th 2015 May 3rd 2017

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Rectal bleeding is more common in patients with:
  1. 0 Crohn's
  2. 1 Ulcerative Colitis
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While rectal bleeding can occur in Crohn’s disease, it is more common in ulcerative colitis.  Ulcerative colitis always involves the rectum and there is always damage to the mucosa, or inner lining of the colon.  Crohn’s disease can involve the entire GI tract but most of the time does not spread to the rectum.

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  1. Rectal bleeding is more common in patients with:

    Correct Answer: Ulcerative Colitis

    While rectal bleeding can occur in Crohn’s disease, it is more common in ulcerative colitis.  Ulcerative colitis always involves the rectum and there is always damage to the mucosa, or inner lining of the colon.  Crohn’s disease can involve the entire GI tract but most of the time does not spread to the rectum.

  2. Compared to ulcerative colitis, patients with Crohn's disease are more likely to have:

    Correct Answer: Fistulas

    While abdominal in, diarrhea and rectal bleeding occur in both diseases, fistulas typically occur only in Crohn’s. Because the entire thickness of the bowel wall is usually involved in Crohn’s disease, inflammation can extend and connect to other organs, including skin, reproductive organs and other parts of the bowel.

  3. Which disorder is usually cured with surgery?

    Correct Answer: Ulcerative colitis

    Since ulcerative colitis only involves the colon, removal of the colon will cure the disease.  Crohn’s disease, on the other hand, can involve any part of the gastrointestinal tract.  Surgery may resolve an acute problem, but the disease will most likely recur in another part of the gastrointestinal tract.

  4. While ulcerative colitis only involves the colon, Crohn's disease may involve:

    Correct Answer: All of the above

    Crohn’s disease can involve any area of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the anus, including the esophagus, stomach, small bowel and colon.

  5. Smoking is thought to be protective in patients with:

    Correct Answer: Ulcerative colitis

    Researchers have found that the nicotine in tobacco has a positive influence on ulcerative colitis according to studies done on patients with refractory ulcerative colitis.  Patients with Crohn’s disease that begin smoking can suffer a flare.

  6. The following laboratory abnormalities are common in patients with ulcerative colitis:

    Correct Answer: All of the above

    Patients with ulcerative colitis, especially when the disease is active, will have laboratory evidence of inflammation. This includes an elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate and elevated c-reactive protein. Anemia is common as well.

  7. Patients with _______ have an increased risk of colon cancer.

    Correct Answer: Ulcerative colitis and Colonic Crohn's

    There is a strong correlation between ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease and the risk of colon cancer. The risk is felt to be secondary to longstanding inflammation. Patients living with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis should check with their doctors about having frequent colonoscopies.

  8. All of the following are typically found on colonoscopy tests in patients with ulcerative colitis, except:

    Correct Answer: Areas of patchy inflammation

    In ulcerative colitis, the inflammation process starts at the rectum and progresses proximally.  Patchy inflammation is common in Crohn’s disease. Ulcerations and pseudopolyps are typical in ulcerative colitis.

  9. One biologic agent currently approved for use on ulcerative colitis is:

    Correct Answer: Both are approved biologics

    Biologic agents are being used more frequently in the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, Currently, both Remicade and Humira are approved for use in Crohn’s disease.

  10. Complications of IBD include all of the following except:

    Correct Answer: Heart Disease

    Heart disease is not a complication of IBD. Patients with IBD frequently encounter disease outside of the intestine, or extra-intestinal manifestations.