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    An Introduction to Inflammatory Bowel Disease

    Inflammatory bowel disease is a term used to describe chronic, relapsing inflammatory disorders of the digestive tract. The major types are ulcerative colitis, which causes inflammation in the colon, and Crohn’s disease, which may affect any part of the digestive tract, from mouth to anus. Symptoms include abdominal pain, blood in the stool, irregular bowel habits, weight loss and fatigue. Established treatment options are surgery, aminosalicylates, corticosteroids, immunomodulators and anti-TNFα inhibitors; however, many patients will fail to respond or become refractory to these therapies. Emerging therapies include anti-integrin therapy, JAK1 inhibitors, sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor modulators, stem-cell transplant and faecal microbiota transplant.

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