How full your life is should be up to you, not your gut.
Ulcerative colitis (UC) impacts more than just your colon. Its impact can span beyond the physical to the mental, emotional, and social aspects of life. This Is Living with UC was created in support of caring for your whole self, with information and resources available whenever you may need them.
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Learn more about how food affects your body and strategies to discover what works for you.
Find Your Circle
There are a number of organizations and support groups dedicated to the UC community. Find the ones that are right for you.
Shared decision-making (SDM) is a collaboration between you and your doctor. By working together, you can develop a plan tailored to meet your needs. Find out how you can begin this process with your doctor.
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Our LivingWith™ UC app is a personalized experience to help you navigate your health and everyday life with UC.
"Being diagnosed and living with UC has definitely impacted my life choices, especially changing my view on health."Laura Scaviola, diagnosed in 2013
Types of UC
Doctors sometimes classify UC based on where inflammation is happening in the colon, but disease severity may still vary between them. Symptoms may also overlap between types.
Inflammation is confined to the area closest to the anus (rectum). Bleeding may be the only sign of the disease.
Inflammation occurs in the lower end of the colon (the rectum or sigmoid colon). Symptoms may include bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and an inability to move the bowels.
Inflammation extends from the rectum up through the descending portion of the colon. Symptoms may include bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramps (with pain on the left side), and bowel urgency.
Affecting the entire colon, this causes bouts of bloody diarrhea that may be severe, abdominal cramps and pain, fatigue, and weight loss.
What is UC?
UC is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that causes inflammation and ulcers (sores) in your digestive tract. It is a chronic, or ongoing, condition where symptoms usually develop over time and can affect each person differently.
What Causes UC?
While nobody knows what causes UC, it is believed to be related to an abnormal immune response, where the body attacks itself in the lining of the colon. This abnormal response may be influenced by our genetics, the environment, and exposure of our gut to certain foods, medicines, or other chemicals. It may also be influenced by the microbiome of the gut or exposure to infections as well.