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Paediatric inflammatory bowel disease UPSC NOTE

 Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

  • IBD is a chronic autoimmune condition where the white blood cells or the body’s soldiers mistakenly identify cells in the human gut as their enemy and decide to attack it, causing ulcers in the mucosa. 

  • As a result children may develop fever, abdominal pain, loose stools and at times bloody diarrhoea

  • These children may not absorb macro and micronutrients and hence lose weight, muscle mass, become anaemic and may have vitamin deficiencies.

  • There were two types of IBD — 

    • Ulcerative colitis which affects only the large bowel and 

    • Crohn’s disease which can affect any part of the gut from mouth to anus.

How it affects

  • Medical research is still ongoing to pinpoint the exact cause. 

  • What is known is that children who are susceptible to IBD often have a weak or dysregulated immune system which responds inappropriately to environmental triggers such as a virus or bacteria

  • There may also be genetic factors which predispose these children to IBD as sometimes it seems to affect members of the same family. 

  • The human gastrointestinal tract harbours millions of microorganisms; often referred to as gut microbiota and this plays an important role in IBD

  • The gut microbiota of each individual is unique and influences health and disease.

  • Westernisation of food habits and lifestyle is also strongly linked to changes in the gut microbiota and a predisposition to develop IBD


  • IBD - Crohn’s disease can be treated with very effective medications that control the inflammation and suppress the dysregulated and overactive immune system. 

  • These medications include steroids and a new class of drugs called biologics

  • But it is also possible to control the inflammation in the gut and heal ulcers in some children with the milder variety of Crohn’ disease; without drugs using ‘exclusive enteral nutrition’

  • IBD – Ulcerative colitis is also treated similarly, though another group of drugs called ‘aminosalicylates’ are used to treat milder forms of Ulcerative colitis. 

  • Exclusive Enteral Nutrition has not been found to be useful in treating Ulcerative Colitis



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Paediatric inflammatory bowel disease UPSC NOTE
Paediatric inflammatory bowel disease UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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