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Complications

I'll Be Disciplined in doing all I can to effectively manage — and in some cases even prevent — IBD complications.

Your Complications Journey

Start your Complications Journey to learn more about IBD complications, rethink how they can affect you, and explore different ways to manage and reduce your risk of complications. Complete all five challenges along your journey to earn your Chief Navigator badge.

By the end of your journey, we hope you'll be disciplined in doing all you can to effectively manage — and in some cases even prevent — IBD complications.

start journey

Why Manage IBD Complications?

Complications of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) — which can involve the intestinal tract itself or other areas of the body — can interfere with your overall management of IBD, and in some cases, lead to serious consequences.

It's important to remember that not everyone with IBD will experience complications, and some of these events are very rare. However, early recognition, prompt treatment, and making efforts to reduce the risk of complications are important.

Benefits of managing IBD complications

Choosing to manage IBD complications may result in:

  • Better control of IBD symptoms
  • Improvement in complication-related symptoms
  • Reduced risk of serious, potentially life-threatening problems
  • Reduced risk of long-term, sometimes irreversible, conditions
  • Ability to manage your IBD more effectively

Risks of not  managing IBD complications

Choosing to not manage IBD complications may result in:

  • Worsened IBD symptoms
  • Persistent complication-related symptoms
  • Increased risk of serious, potentially life-threatening problems
  • Increased risk of long-term, sometimes irreversible, conditions
  • Inability to manage your IBD effectively

Challenge 1 of 5

Play the Matching Game

Some intestinal IBD complications are specific to Crohn's disease, and some are specific to ulcerative colitis (UC). Do you know the difference? Match the complication on the right with either Crohn’s or UC on the left. At the end, we’ll let you know how you did!


play

Challenge 1 of 5

Play the Matching Game

Crohn's UC Complications
Fistulas (abnormal passages connecting different parts of the intestine; caused by deep sores or ulcers in the intestinal tract)
Bowel perforation (rupture that causes a hole in the bowel)
Toxic megacolon (most serious complication of IBD; causes severe abdominal distension)
Intestinal obstruction (thickening of bowel wall and narrowing of intestinal passage)
Abscesses (localized pus pocket caused by bacterial infection)
Fulminant colitis (progressive severe inflammation causing damage to the entire colon)

Challenge 1 of 5

Play the Matching Game: Results

You Got
0 out of 6
Correct

Early detection and prompt treatment are the keys to managing complications. So make sure you learn as much as you can, and pay attention to any changes or symptoms of these complications.

Challenge 2 of 5

Myth or Fact?

If your IBD isn't active (not having symptoms), you don't have to worry about colorectal cancer.

Fact
Myth

Challenge 2 of 5

Myth or Fact? Results

Even if you're not experiencing symptoms, you're still at risk for colorectal cancer (CRC). It's important to see your doctor regularly and have routine tests to be sure there are no signs of cancer. Use our CRC Risk Discussion Guide to talk to your doctor about your individual risk for CRC.

Keep going. You're on your way to earning the Chief Navigator badge!

Challenge 3 of 5

Test Your Knowledge

Some medications can cause side effects that mimic IBD complications:

True
False

Challenge 3 of 5

Test Your Knowledge: Results

It is believed that most IBD complications are caused by an abnormal immune system response that triggers inflammation in the intestine and other parts of the body. However, some extraintestinal complications are caused by certain medications. Even though certain medications can have side effects in some people, it's important to weigh the benefits and risks of medications with your doctor.

Learn more about extraintestinal manifestations

Challenge 4 of 5

Tell Us About You

If you have colorectal cancer, where have you turned for support?
(Check all that apply.)

Friends and family
Doctor and other members of my health care team
Support groups in my area
Online support groups, chat rooms, forums, blogs, help lines
All of the above
Other
Not applicable

Challenge 4 of 5

Tell Us About You

We know how important it is to have a strong support system when living with colorectal cancer. Hear what Dr. David Rubin has to say about colorectal cancer, and get tips for coping. Watch video

You can also find support through the CCFA Community site and CCFA support groups.

One more challenge to earn your Chief Navigator badge!

Challenge 5 of 5

Prove Your Discipline

Starting today, I will: (Check all that apply.)

Stay on my IBD medication to help control inflammation
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
See my doctor regularly and keep up with my routine tests
Discuss the benefits and risks of medications with my doctor
Become aware of potential risk factors for colorectal cancer
Do what I can to detect complications early and treat them promptly

Challenge 5 of 5

Prove Your Discipline

Get the Chief Navigator Badge

Challenge 5 of 5

Congratulations!

You finished the Complications Journey and earned your Chief Navigator badge. To save your badge in your profile, please log in or register.

Get involved in CCFA programs and advocacy opportunities.

I Earned the Chief Navigator Badge
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Be Inspired. Inspire Others.

Earn your badges, then share your experience with others living with IBD.