Crohn's disease is a form of inflammatory bowel disease affecting any part of the gastrointestinal tract between the mouth and anus. In many cases, Crohn’s disease is present for years before it is diagnosed. Patients with the condition usually experience periods of flare-ups and remission.
During a flare-up, symptoms of Crohn’s disease include diarrhea, fever, fatigue, blood in stools, abdominal cramping and pain, mouth sores, loss of appetite, weight loss, and pain or leakage near or around the anus. Severe Crohn’s disease may also cause inflammation of the eyes, skin, joints, liver, or bile ducts.
As there is currently no cure for Crohn’s disease, treatment focuses on alleviating the symptoms, maintaining remission, and preventing a relapse. Drug classes used to treat the Crohn’s disease include systemic corticosteroids, plain, aminosalicyclic acid and related intestinal antiinflammatory agents, other specific antirheumatics, anti-rheumtic monoclonal antibody preparations, tumor necrosis factor (TNF) alpha inhibitors, immunomodulators, monoclonal antibodies, and selective immunosuppressants.