10 things you need to know about Ulcerative Colitis

10 August 2016

Following Siobhan-Marie O'Connor's superb performance at the Rio Olympics, we have published these facts and infographics about Ulcerative Colitis.

Crohn's and colitis facts

  1. Ulcerative Colitis (UC) is one of the two main forms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). The other main form of IBD is a condition known as Crohn’s Disease.
  2. It is estimated that there are at least 146,000 living in the UK with UC which means 1 in every 420 people have been diagnosed with the condition.
  3. Ulcerative Colitis causes inflammation and ulceration of the inner lining of the rectum and colon (the large bowel).  The inflammation usually begins in the rectum and lower colon, but it may affect the entire colon.
  4. Symptoms may range from mild to severe and will vary from person to person. The main symptoms include; diarrhea often with blood, severe pain, anaemia, extreme fatigue and sometimes dramatic weight loss. 
  5. There is no known cure.
  6. Possible causes – Although there has been a lot of research, we still don’t really know what causes Ulcerative Colitis.  Researchers now believe that UC is caused by a combination of factors: your genes, environment and an abnormal reaction of the immune system to bacteria in the gut.
  7. Treatments – There is a wide range of drugs such as immunosupressants used to treat the inflammation and sometimes surgery is needed when these treatments are proving ineffective. Surgery may be needed to remove the whole or part of the colon which may result in a stoma.
  8. Other sports personalities diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis include five-time Olympic gold medallist Sir Steve Redgrave, former England Rugby Captain Lewis Moody and International Footballers; Darren Fletcher and Russell Martin.
  9. Crohns and Colitis UK is the leading national charity and membership organisation that supports anyone affected by IBD. We provide high quality patient information in the form of information sheets and booklets as well as information and support phone lines.
  10. Crohns and Colitis UK have been leading the drive to increase knowledge of the causes and best treatments of Crohn’s and Colitis for more than 30 years.  As a charity we have funded research that has led to vital discoveries about the conditions – and continues to do so. But we don’t stop there, our aim is to improve lives right now and, ultimately, to find a cure.

Find out more

For more information or comment please contact media@crohnsandcolitis.org.uk or call 01727 734478