Crohn's disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that can damage the lining of any part of the digestive system, including the mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum, or anus. This inflammatory disease most often affects the small intestine, especially a portion known as the terminal ileum.

Figure 1

Crohn's disease causes inflammation, sores, bleeding, and scarring of the walls of the digestive system. The inflammation occurs in patches, and can penetrate deep into the walls of the digestive system.

More than 110,000 people in Canada are affected by Crohn's disease. Crohn's disease can affect people of any age, and it is usually diagnosed when people are between 15 to 25 years old or 45 to 55 years old. The disease can have a devastating impact on people's lives.

The good news is that effective treatments are available that can help you take control of your Crohn's disease, so you can live as symptom-free as possible. Talk to your doctor to help you find a treatment that's right for you.