Treating inflammatory bowel disease

Treating inflammatory bowel disease with these drugs increases your risk of bone disease by 7 times                                                          by Steve Kroening; Posted by Douglas Raine  

If you have severe digestive problems, your doctor will likely tell you the problem is inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This is really just a description of the problem, not a real diagnosis. And it may or may not be a real disease. It could be a condition caused by allergies, food intolerance, or even the drugs you're taking.

What's worse, the drugs your doctor gives you to treat this condition may increase your risk of getting blood and bone-marrow diseases. And the increased risk isn't small — it could increase it by as much as sevenfold.

Researchers from the University Hospital of Nancy-Brabois in France published their report in the journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. The drugs they studied are thiopurines. They're supposed to provide symptomatic relief and reduce the number of flare-ups. They do this by reducing inflammation.

In this study, the researchers examined 19,486 people. All of them were participating in the Cancers Et Surrisque Associe aux Maladies inflammatoires intestinales En France study between May 2004 and June 2005. After three years, the researchers followed up with each of the participants to see how many of them had developed myeloid leukemia and the bone marrow disorder myelodysplastic syndrome.

The researchers found that the patients exposed to thiopurines were seven times more likely to have one of these disorders than those who didn't take the drugs. This told the researchers that it is the drugs, not the IBD, that increases your risk.

Since IBD is just a general description of the problem, treating the inflammation isn't going to solve the problem. It could make it worse. And, in this case, you can see the drugs caused other problems as well. Inflammation is your body's way of dealing with an injury. So reducing inflammation, without addressing the underlying cause, can prevent the body from healing. Since IBD involves chronic inflammation, the injury is ongoing. So you have to find out what is causing the injury.

I know a man who suffered from severe bowel distress. He treated it with anti-inflammatory herbs, which helped the pain. But it wasn't until he found out that beans, especially coffee beans, were causing severe injury to his bowels. He stopped drinking coffee and eating beans, and the distress went away.

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