Crohn Disease in Children and Teens (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
What about surgery for Crohn's disease in children and teens?
Surgery usually is considered when medical therapy has failed and complications develop. In such cases, growth failure, obstruction, abscess, fistula, hemorrhage, and perforation are all indications for surgery. The usual operation is to remove a section of the intestine (resection), or widen the narrow segment of the intestine (stricturoplasty). Such a "resection" is not a cure, however, since Crohn's disease often recurs after surgery.
Can Crohn's disease be prevented?
There is no known way of preventing Crohn's disease.
What is the outlook for a child or teen with Crohn's disease?
The child or teen with Crohn's disease should have regular visits with his or her healthcare team. The purpose of these visits is to reduce symptoms, achieve or maintain remission, and prevent complications. These visits allow the team to monitor symptoms, check for side effects, and adjust treatment if necessary. These visits also allow the parents to communicate any problems to the child's care team. Any emotional or behavioral problems should be reported as well as any physical problems.
Crohn's disease usually can be managed on an outpatient basis. Children and teens with the disease are not routinely admitted to the hospital. Hospitalization is warranted if there is any suggestion of a serious complication (obstruction, perforation, abscess, hemorrhage) or a need for intravenous medication in a severe flare.
Crohn's disease is a serious disease that may have a big impact on the life of a child or teen. But it usually is not a fatal disease, and with appropriate treatment and support, most children do very well and are able to attend school and participate in sports and daily activities.
Where can I get information about support groups and counseling for my child and family?
Living with the effects of Crohn's disease can be difficult. Sometimes you or your child may feel frustrated, perhaps even angry or resentful. Oftentimes it helps to have someone to talk to about their situation.
Support groups consist of people in a similar situation. They provide reassurance, motivation, and inspiration. They help you see that your situation is not unique, and that gives you power. They also provide practical tips on coping with this disorder. Support groups are valuable to parents, siblings, and the affected child, especially teens.
Support groups meet in person, on the telephone, or on the Internet. To find a support group that works for you, ask your health care provider or contact the following organizations or look them up on the Internet. If you do not have access to the Internet, go to a public library.
Medically reviewed by John A. Daller, MD
American Board of Surgery with subspecialty certification in surgical critical care
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/2/2016
Andrew B. Grossman, MD
Bhupinder Anand, MD
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Crohn's Disease in Children and Teens - Experience
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Crohn's Disease in Children and Teens - Home Care
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Crohn's Disease in Children and Teens - Surgery
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