Colitis and Crohn's Disease
Ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease are chronic gastric inflammatory diseases with unknown cause. In colitis the inflammation focuses more on the lower GI and rectal areas. The manifesting symptoms are pain and chronic diarrhea which contains pus and blood. Because there is no known cause for ulcerative colitis or Crohn's, western medical treatment focuses on relief of symptoms. Within the paradigm of Traditional Chinese Medicine we can view inflammatory bowel disease in a different light. The causes can be constitutional deficiencies, an infection or invasion by an outside pathogen, or dietary. An accurate diagnosis relies upon the various symptoms related to digestion as well as the whole body system. The compilation of concerns will show a pattern of disharmony. Treatment is then applied accordingly, usually with great success. An article written by John K. Chen for Medical Acupuncture, "A Journal Written For Physicians, By Physicians," in Volume 13 Number 3 illustrates the difference between the western and eastern approach to Colitis and inflammatory bowel disease. He concludes that Oriental medicine offers an effective treatment for mild to moderate ulcerative colitis. This article examined the effects of both acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, finding them both safe and beneficial for resolving pain, diarrhea and dysentery symptoms.
How Many Treatment will I Need?
First the manifesting symptoms need to be controlled. Often times we use acupuncture and herbal medicine concurrently with a patient receiving western care. If the patient is in a flared stage, a series of 6 acupuncture treatments given twice a week along with to control bleeding and diarrhea is the initial step. After the first series of treatments, the condition will be re-accessed and a more accurate long-term treatment plan can be established. Diet modifications to eliminate triggers and the worsening of symptoms are also a crucial part of colitis treatment. I will do a thorough diet history and discuss with you any changes to your eating habits that may help the condition.
Forstoppelse og Diare
The term constipation can mean infrequent or hard stools, or it can refer to difficulty passing stools. Constipation may involve pain during the passage of a bowel movement, the inability to have a bowel movement after straining for longer than 10 minutes, or no bowel movements at all for more than 3 days. The most common causes of constipation include a low-fiber diet, lack of physical activity, stress, travel, inadequate intake of fluid each day, or delay in going to the bathroom when you have the urge to defecate. Other causes are IBS, pregnancy, thyroid conditions, depression, neurological diseases, or certain medications. Serious causes such as colon cancer are rare but should not be ruled out until examination by your gastroenterologist. Constipation and diarrhea, while very common, are one of the least talked about physical complaints. An acupuncturist always begins their initial consultation with a whole-body review because stool consistency and frequency is a very important part of general health. The effects of irregular bowel movements are often poor food absorption and fatigue, sallow complexion or frequent break-outs, pain in the lower abdomen, upset in appetite and weight control, and more. When someone is not eliminating their waste at a regular rate and consistency, it is a clue of a deeper imbalance within the body.
How Can Acupuncture Help Regulate Bowel Frequency?
Certain acupuncture points have an effect on GI motility. The treatment will either be used to relax a more spastic colon or to stimulate peristalsis. Within the concepts and theories of Chinese medicine, there is a more complete method of interpreting digestive disorders. When someone has very dry and difficult to pass stool, herbs will be given to moisten the intestines and long-term treatment will focus on re-establishing a less dry digestive environment. When someone has chronic, explosive diarrhea that burns and causes pain, acupuncture will help calm the large intestine and herbs will be given to remove toxins such as bacteria or virus and to clear heat from the digestive system. Likewise, when someone experiences chronic watery painless diarrhea, acupuncture will be used to tonify the digestive system and herbs will be given to warm the digestion so that food is transformed into usable energy more efficiently. All of these treatment scenarios have a side-component of diet and lifestyle modification. Often bowel movements can be improved with different food choices and better eating habits such as chewing thoroughly, taking time to eat, etc. I will listen to your diet habits and discuss with you changes that will benefit your specific intestinal issues