Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Although treatment options and relief methods have improved in the past several years, there is still no cure for UC besides complete removal of the colon. However, doctors usually reserve this option for severe diseases.
This article explores some UCSD treatment options, including natural remedies, and provides information about ongoing research into developing better treatments for the condition.
A doctor who treats UC has several options. The goal of treatment will be to help reduce inflammation, prevent flare-ups, and improve a person’s overall quality of life.
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation outlines three main treatment options for people with UC. These options are:
- Diet and Nutrition
University of California Medicines
Doctors usually prescribe UCSD drugs based on
For mild to moderate cases, they often prescribe oral or rectal aminosalicylates. These anti-inflammatory medications contain 5-aminosalicylic acid, including:
For moderate to severe cases, the doctor may prescribe corticosteroids with or without other medications to bring the condition back to remission. Once he is in remission, the goal is to reduce corticosteroid use. At this point, the doctor may prescribe immunosuppressants, such as:
Doctors may also prescribe biopharmaceuticals, which are products made from living cells. The biologics that people with UC use include:
- Janus Kinase Inhibitors
- tumor necrosis factor factors
The doctor may also prescribe additional medications, such as antibiotics, to treat infections. People sometimes develop infections as a complication of UC and immunosuppression.
People with ulcerative colitis should try to avoid using non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, to avoid triggering symptoms.
Making dietary changes can play a role in a person’s overall health and continued remission of UC. Although there is no single diet that helps everyone, some diets may be better than others for people with this condition.
The University of Massachusetts Medical School created an IBD diet to help restore the balance of gut bacteria. Research suggests that imbalances in bacteria may be partially responsible for IBD symptoms.
The UCSD diet focuses on four different components for optimal health and control. The four components are:
- Prebiotics: These help feed the good bacteria in the gut, and they also contain soluble fibre. They include items such as steel-cut oats, vegetables, chia seeds, flax seeds, and bananas.
- Probiotics: These are fermented foods that contain live bacteria, such as yogurt, kimchi, and miso.
- good nutrition: A healthy diet should include fruits, lean proteins, healthy fats, and vegetables.
- Avoid: Inflammatory foods to avoid include those that contain corn, lactose, high amounts of saturated fat, refined sugar, and wheat, as they interfere with your gut flora.
Changes in diet, while important in many cases, should not replace the treatment plan recommended by your doctor. A person should also speak with a doctor before making any major dietary changes.
According to a 2019 study,
This has decreased significantly in recent years, and the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation credits the use of biopharmaceuticals.
The proportion of people who required a colectomy in the year after their first hospitalization fell to 5.3% from 20% several years ago. The proportion of those who required a colectomy within one year of hospitalization fell to 11.9% from 30%.
Herbal medicines and complementary therapies will not cure UC. There is limited clinical evidence for the safety and efficacy of herbal medicines.
Some UCSD TCM treatments include:
- wheatgrass juice
- aloe vera gel
- Boswellia serrataAyurvedic herb
- Bovine colostrum enemas, which may have anti-inflammatory effects
The researchers added that herbal remedies are common and may be safer in general than Western medicines.
- traditional chinese medicine
- Herbal supplements such as turmeric
There have been limited studies showing a reduction in symptoms among people who use cannabis, but the authors advised against its use at UCLA. Because of some adverse effects, further research is necessary.
The review suggested that people with UC may also benefit from complementary therapies that help with mental health. These treatments include:
- Playing sports
- knowledge therapy
The person should continue to follow the treatment guidelines they agreed with the doctor. They should also discuss any potential changes to their routine.
Although complementary therapies may help, people should be wary of any treatment that promises to cure UC.
Researchers are constantly looking for new treatments as well as trying to increase their understanding of how UC affects the body.
For example, a team from Stanford University School of Medicine recently reported on a study that looked at the microbes in a person’s digestive system. The study found that people with UCSD had a deficiency in the amount of good bacteria in their digestive system.
The good bacteria help prevent inflammation. New treatments aimed at correcting imbalances in bacteria may help relieve symptoms of uterine inflammation.
University of California Clinical Trials
Clinical trials are studies that use people to test new forms of treatment. Anyone can enroll in a clinical trial as long as they meet the study criteria. Before enrolling, they should talk with their doctor about the potential risks and benefits of joining a survey.
People interested in joining the study can also speak with their doctor to see if they know of any upcoming studies for which they may qualify. Those interested can also visit ClinicalTrials.gov to find UCSD studies across the country.
UCLA currently has no treatment. Treatment options include various medications as well as dietary changes and some complementary therapies. These can help a person achieve and maintain calm.
Research at the University of California is ongoing and includes the search for new ways to treat this condition.