Inflamed colon is also referred to as inflammatory bowel disease, colitis, or ulcerative colitis. While there is no set cause for an inflamed colon, the University of Maryland Medical Center states that it can be a result of a faulty immune system response, genetics or environmental factors. When any of these situations are involved, the immune system reacts by causing inflammation in the body, affecting the colon. There is no cure for an inflamed colon, and treatment involves finding a way to ease the symptoms.
A report from the University of California at San Francisco Medical Center states that the first sign of an inflamed colon is usually diarrhea, or a loosening of the stool. The UMMC reports that diarrhea can be a gradual symptom, or come on suddenly. The diarrhea is often accompanied by blood, and is one of the reasons that patients go to the doctor for a diagnosis.
Abdominal pain is another sign of an inflamed colon, and according to the Mayo Clinic, the exact location of the pain can depend upon what section of the colon is affected with the inflammation. For example, if inflammation is in the colon running from the rectum to the descending colon on the left side, then the abdominal pain is felt on the left side. If the lower end of the colon is inflamed, the pain will be in the lower abdominal area. There are many cases in which the entire colon is inflamed, causing severe abdominal cramps and pain.
Weight loss can often occur when an inflamed colon has become more severe. The weight loss is often a result of excess diarrhea, and the impaired function of the colon, making it difficult for food to properly digest, and vital nutrients to be absorbed. Lack of vitamins and minerals can also result in fatigue. The Mayo Clinic reports that these symptoms often occur when the entire colon is inflamed.
If you experience any of the above symptoms for more than three days, consult your physician.