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Discharge Instructions for Crohn’s Disease

You have been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Your digestive tract is swollen and inflamed. All layers of your digestive tract may be affected. Although there is no cure for Crohn’s disease, you can receive treatment for the symptoms. Help manage your symptoms by following your doctor’s advice and watching what you eat.

Home Care

  • Work closely with your doctor to determine the types of treatment that are best for you.

  • Take your medications exactly as directed.

    • Let your doctor know if you are having uncomfortable side effects.

    • Don’t stop taking your medications without talking to your doctor first.

  • It may be helpful to avoid certain foods for a little while. Depending on your condition, these may include caffeine (coffee, tea, and cola), spicy foods, milk products, and raw fruits and vegetables. For certain people, these can be hard to digest and can worsen symptoms in a flare-up. Your doctor may have you work with a nutritionist to come up with the best food choices for you.

  • Try eating several small meals a day instead of 3 large ones.

  • Keep appointments for regular checkups even if you are not having symptoms.

  • Talk to your doctor about surgery for Crohn’s disease. Surgery won’t cure Crohn’s disease, but it may help control the symptoms. Only you and your doctor can decide if this option is right for you.

  • Learn more about your condition. Contact the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation toll-free at 800-932-2423 (www.ccfa.org)

Managing Nutrition

You may be able to eat most foods until you have a flare-up. But like anyone else, you need to make healthy eating choices. Some of the healthiest foods can make symptoms worse, though. Keeping track of your "problem foods" may be helpful. Ask your doctor any questions you have about healthy eating.

Follow-up

Make a follow-up appointment as directed by our staff.

When to Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor right away if you have any of the following:

  • Severe pain or bloating in your abdomen after meals

  • Sores in your mouth

  • Sores in your anal area (around your rectum)

  • Fever above 101.0°F (38.3°C) or chills

  • Poor appetite or weight loss

  • Bloody diarrhea

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Skin rashes or skin that weeps (or drains)

  • Changes in your vision

Online Medical Reviewer: Nelson, Gail A., MS, APRN, BC
Online Medical Reviewer: newMentor board-certified, academically affiliated clinician
Last Review Date: 3/7/2013
© 2000-2014 Krames StayWell, 780 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.