Learn the Basics of Crohn's Disease

Crohn’s disease is a chronic condition that affects about 700,000 Americans.

It causes inflammation, swelling, and deep sores called ulcers in the body’s  digestive tract. Although it can involve any part of the digestive tract, Crohn’s disease most often affects the lower portion of the small intestine (the ileum) and the upper portion of the large intestine (the colon).

Crohn’s disease is similar to another chronic inflammatory condition that affects only the colon—ulcerative colitis. These diseases are part of a larger group of illnesses called inflammatory bowel disease.

Both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis fluctuate between periods of remission and relapse. Neither have a medical cure, but medical and alternative therapies can reduce the symptoms that people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis experience during times of relapse. In many cases, these therapies help people maintain a normal lifestyle with few interruptions from the diseases.

Causes of Crohn's Disease

There's no single known cause of Crohn's disease, but dedicated researchers continue to explore possibilities.

How Close Are We to a Cure?

While researchers are looking for a cause to Crohn's disease, they're also searching for a cure.

Symptoms of Crohn's Disease

There are many signs that point to Crohn's disease. Learn which ones point to Crohn's and which point to something else.

The Types of Crohn’s Disease

Crohn's affects different parts of the body for different people, so there's no one-size-fits-all diagnosis.

What is Crohn’s?

Crohn's disease is a type of chronic inflammatory bowel disease that requires ongoing management.

Why is Crohn’s So Prevalent in Jewish People?

For certain reasons, Crohn's seems to affect people of Jewish ancestry more than any other demographic.


Want information? Want to take action?
We want to help.

Take steps toward a healthier life, through the power of information. Sign up for Healthline's ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease newsletter and you'll receive:
  • the latest news updates in research and
    treatment options
  • recipes and tips on how to manage your symptoms
  • information on community events, outreach,
    and support

Thanks very much! You’ll receive a confirmation email soon!