Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis is the inflammation of large intestines and the disease falls under the category of Inflammatory Bowel disease (also known as IBD). This causes long-lasting ulcers in your intestines. Ulcerative colitis affects the innermost lining of your large intestine (colon) and rectum. Symptoms usually develop over time, rather than suddenly. This is a lifelong disease and it has no known cure. However, treatment can greatly reduce signs and symptoms of the disease and even bring about long-term remission.

Symptoms for Ulcerative Colitis will show as per the part of the colon that has been affected. In general, your child may suffer from symptoms that could include:

  • chronic diarrhoea

  • rectal bleeding

  • diarrhoea with pus

  • weight loss 

  • constant or sporadic fever

  • abdominal tenderness

  • A mass or feelings of fullness in the lower right abdomen.

  • developmental problems​

​Inform your doctor at the Children’s Hospital Service Line at The Aga Khan University Hospital if you notice any of the above symptoms. Our doctors at the Children’s Hospital at The Aga Khan University Hospital will be able to guide you through the prognosis and suggest related treatment.
Your time with your doctor may be limited, so make sure to prepare for your visit beforehand. Here are some tips to help get you started.
  • Colonoscopy: Will allow your doctor to view the full colon. During the procedure, your doctor can also take small samples of tissue (biopsy) for laboratory analysis. Sometimes a tissue sample can help confirm a diagnosis.

  • Blood tests: your doctor will look for anaemia or white blood cells. Increase white blood cells indicate an infection in the body

  • Stool test: To check your child’s stool for white blood cells, this may indicate an infection.

  • A CT (Computerized Tomography) or MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) scan of your abdomen or pelvis may be performed if your doctor suspects a complication from ulcerative colitis or inflammation of the small intestine. This may also reveal how much of the colon is inflamed.​

​Treatment usually starts with Anti-inflammatory drugs to treat the inflammation of the bowel. 

Immune suppressors: these drugs also reduce inflammation, but they do so by suppressing the immune system response that triggers the process of inflammation.

Other medications include antibiotics, pain relievers, anti-diarrheal medications and iron supplements to restore the deficiency.

Surgery may be an option, which usually means the complete removal of the colon. Your surgeon constructs a pouch from the end of your small intestine. The pouch is then attached directly to your anus, allowing you to expel waste relatively normally.​

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers various support services to help with managing or recovering from the disease or condition. These include but are not limited to nutrition, physiotherapy, rehabilitation, specialized clinics and some patient support groups. Your doctor or nurse will advise you accordingly.

The Aga Khan University Hospital offers financial assistance to those who are in need and fulfil the eligibility criteria. For further information, you can contact the Patient Welfare Department. You can find the contact number of the Patient Welfare Department in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage.

The financial counselling staff is available during office hours, at the main PBSD (Patient Business Services Department), to answer your financial queries on treatments’ costs and authorize admissions on partial deposit as per hospital policies allow. The financial counsellor in the emergency room is open 24/7. You can find the contact number of the Patient Business Services in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage.​

Your doctor and or nurse will give you specific instructions about the prescribed medication. Please ensure that you take or use the prescribed medicine as advised. It can be dangerous to your health if you self-prescribe. Please inform the doctor or nurse beforehand if you have experienced any adverse reactions to any medications in the past. If you experience any symptoms of drug poisoning, overdose or severe reaction please contact the Pharmacy Service at The Aga Khan University Hospital immediately. You can find the contact number of the Pharmacy Services in the ‘Important Numbers’ section on the website homepage.

​The information provided on our website is for educational purposes and not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. You should always seek the advice of your doctor or other healthcare professional provider.