Colon. This department is responsible not only for the absorption of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, but also for the formation of feces from the remnants of processed food and their removal from the body. The main symptom of inflammation in the colon is discomfort in the lower abdomen. There are other characteristic signs:
- fecal incontinence;
- rumbling in the stomach;
- pain in the anus, on the sides of the abdomen;
- secretion of mucus from the anus;
- violation of sexual desire;
- diarrhea, constipation, their alternation;
- gas emissions;
- unproductive urge to the toilet;
- weight loss;
- vitamin deficiency.
Irritable bowel syndrome. Otherwise, this disease is called dyskinesia, spastic bowel and mucous colitis. For short, irritable bowel syndrome is referred to as IBS. The disease causes impaired motility of the colon, which leads to gastrointestinal disorders. The exact cause of the syndrome is still unknown. Of great importance in its development is given to the psycho-emotional state, heredity, nutrition and composition of microflora. The main symptoms of IBS are:
- rumbling in the stomach;
- violation of the stool;
- pain in the intestines.
Attacks of diarrhea are more likely to occur in the morning. The urge to defecate occurs after breakfast. With bowel movement, pain and discomfort go away. Patients note that diarrhea also occurs against the background of psychoemotional stress. Regardless of the patient’s nutrition, rumbling, constipation, and abdominal pain are tormenting. Sometimes unpleasant sensations are noted even in the back, heart and joints. IBS is difficult to distinguish from chronic pancreatitis, dysbiosis and oncology. Diagnosis is often based on the subjective complaints of the patient and a thorough history.
The term “diverticulum” means an extension of the intestinal wall, which leads to the formation of a pocket in it, protruding into the abdominal cavity. Such formations are more often localized in the descending and sigmoid regions. The disease is called diverticulosis. The main causes of its development are weak tone of the intestinal walls and constant constipation. Diverticulums not complicated by anything cause only constipation and heaviness in the abdomen. In case of inflammation, in addition to stool disorders, the following appear:
- abdominal pain;
- mucus and blood in the stool;
According to statistics, chronic colitis occurs in half of people with digestive problems. The disease is an inflammation of the mucous membrane of the colon. For pathology, an alternation of periods of exacerbation and remission is characteristic. Colitis can develop as a result of dysbiosis, weakened immunity, lack of fiber. Its presence is indicated by:
- acute pain after eating;
- unstable nature of the stool with alternating constipation and diarrhea;
- a feeling of bitterness in the mouth;
- loss of appetite.
In terms of prevalence, colitis is total and segmental. In the first case, the pathological process affects all parts of the colon, in the second – only a certain section of it. According to another classification, there are:
- Spastic colitis. It is accompanied by severe pain in different parts of the intestine due to involuntary spasms. The reason is a violation of the motor activity of the intestine.
- Nonspecific ulcerative colitis. It develops due to immune malfunctions, the cause of which has not yet been clarified. Ulcers and bleeding are added to the main symptoms of colitis. This form of colitis is dangerous for the possible development of cancer.
Among oncological pathologies, one of the leading places is colon cancer. People over the age of 40 are more prone to it. The main risk factor is malnutrition with a low content of insoluble fiber and vitamins. Refined foods with a large amount of trans and animal fats affect the colon. Cancer of this organ is predisposed to people whose relatives suffered from ulcerative colitis.
In the early stages, the tumor does not manifest itself. Cancer is often detected by random endoscopic examination. If the patient did not pass it, then over time he notices the following symptoms:
- blood in the stool;
- severe emaciation;
- pain during bowel movements;
Colon cancer is symptomatically similar to other intestinal pathologies, therefore, the tumor process cannot be ruled out. If you have these symptoms, you need to see a doctor: pass stool for occult blood, undergo sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy, and check for oncogenicity of polyps and cysts. Colon cancer is treated radically through surgery and chemotherapy. The forecast of five-year survival in the first stage of the pathological process is 90%, in 2-3 – 60-85%, and in the last – 7%.
Since the symptoms of different intestinal diseases are similar, you cannot diagnose yourself on your own. When the first pathological signs appear, consult a doctor. Based on the examination and a number of studies, a specialist will be able to get a complete picture of the disease, its nature and localization. The following methods are used to make the correct diagnosis:
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy. With the help of a special device – a sigmoidoscope, the doctor examines all parts of the intestine.
- Irrigoscopy. This is an X-ray procedure in which a contrast agent is injected into the cavity of the organ under study. To study the small intestine, the patient is allowed to swallow a suspension of barium sulfate, and the colon is injected with a special drug through the anus.
- Upper endoscopy. This method involves the use of an endoscope, which has a backlight and fiber optics. This helps the specialist to examine the tissues of the esophagus tube, stomach and intestines.
- Colonoscopy This is a specialized type of endoscopy. The endoscope device in this case is introduced through the anus, and not through the mouth.
- Capsule endoscopy. This is a modern technique in which an examination of the intestine occurs due to a tiny container. The patient simply swallows it. During the day, the device records the incoming information.