Colitis is the inflammation of the lining of the colon. There are many different types of Colitis but all are characterized by an inflammation of the large intestine (also known as the colon). Each type can include abdominal pain, diarrhea, dehydration, bloating, increased intestinal gas and bloody stools. Colitis is one of the two types of illness that constitute inflammatory bowel disease. The other is Chron’s Disease.
Depending on the form of the disease, inflammation can be caused by acute and chornic infections, inflammatory disorders (ulcerative colitis, Chrons’s colitis, lymphocytic and collagenous colitis), lack of blood flow or a history of radiation to the large bowel.
Treatment depends on the underlying cause of the disease — infection, inflammation or lack of blood flow. While there is no “cure” there are several medications used to heal the affected areas of the colon and relieve symptoms. Surgery may be an option when medical therapy does not produce results.