Colitis and Proctitis

Colitis is a term that refers to inflammation of the colon or large intestine. Some types of colitis are Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s Disease, Proctitis, and Spastic.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease (regional enteritis) are called idiopathic since neither their etiology nor pathogenesis is completely understood. Idiopathic Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is characterized by chronic inflammation at various sites in the gastrointestinal tract. Certain differences in disease patterns justify a distinction at least between ulcerative colitis and regional enteritis, although groupings and sub-groupings are somewhat artificial. Some cases will be difficult if not impossible to classify.

Ulcerative Colitis is a chronic, nonspecific, inflammatory, and ulcerative disease of the colon and rectum; marked by bloody diarrhea and cramps, occurring in a series of attacks. For more detailed information, view our page on Ulcerative Colitis.

Crohn’s Disease is a nonspecific granulomatous inflammatory disease, which may involve any area of the gastrointestinal tract from the esophagus to the rectum; marked by chronic diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, and weight loss. For more detailed information, view our page on Crohn’s Disease.

Proctitis is inflammation of the rectum; marked by bloody stools and a frequent urge to defecate; frequently associated with Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis Proctitis. For more detailed information, view our page on Proctitis.

Spastic Colitis / Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Spastic Colitis is not a true colitis. Spastic colon or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a motility disorder involving the small intestine and large bowel associated with variable degrees of abdominal pain, constipation, or diarrhea, largely as a reaction to stress in a susceptible individual. These syndromes represent about 50% of all new gastrointestinal complaints in private and institutional care facilities. Women are more commonly affected than men, in a 3:1 ratio. For more detailed information, view our pages on Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Adults and Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Children.