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Cutaneous manifestations of inflammatory bowel disease
Author: Hon A/Prof Amanda Oakley, Dermatologist, Hamilton, New Zealand, September 2015.
What is inflammatory bowel disease?
There are two main forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) – ulcerative colitis and Crohn disease. Both are characterised by abdominal pain and diarrhoea, sometimes with bleeding.
Ulcerative colitis typically involves only the colon (large bowel)
Crohn disease can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract from the lips to the anus with scattered lesions. Crohn disease is characterised on pathology by non-caseating granulomas but these are not always found on bowel biopsy.
Although the two diseases are quite separate, accurate diagnosis can sometimes be difficult especially in the early stages. Therefore involvement of other organs can help to make the distinction.
Skin disease and IBD
DermNet NZ includes the following pages about inflammatory bowel disease: