Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the intestines that does not have an identifiable cause (such as infection). Pediatric IBD causes the immune system to become inappropriately active, causing injury to the intestines.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

There are two primary types of Inflammatory Bowel Disease or IBD:

Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative colitis affects only the lining of the large intestine (the colon).

Crohn’s Disease

Crohn’s disease can affect any part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Most often Crohn’s disease affects the small or large intestines. It can cause inflammation in the lining and deeper layers of the intestines.

Quick Facts

  • An estimated 1,000,000 Americans are living with IBD.
  • Nearly 1 in 4 patients diagnosed are under 20 years old.
  • The exact cause of IBD is unknown, but both genetic and environmental factors may be involved.
  • IBD can affect parts of the body outside the GI tract, such as the skin, joints, eyes, or liver.
  • Don’t confuse IBD with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) – a different and less severe condition.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease in kids can often be managed effectively through medication or other treatments.
COVID-19: What pediatric IBD patients and caregivers need to know

IBD Resources

Featured Resources

PDF Downloads



In this book, medical experts explain all you need to know about IBD and answer important questions, including:

  • What are inflammatory bowel diseases, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis?
• Is there a cure for IBD?
  • How is IBD going to affect my child’s daily life?
  • Will my child’s diet change?
  • Can my child still play sports?
  • Will my child need surgery?
  • What are the side effects of commonly prescribed medications?
  • What challenges may my child face at school and socially, especially as he or she grows older?

To purchase: Please go to the Johns Hopkins Press Website.


Educational support for the NASPGHAN Foundation’s Pediatric IBD Education Campaign was provided by major sponsors P&G Pharmaceuticals, Shire, UCB Inc. and Centocor, Inc. Additional support for the campaign was provided by Prometheus Therapeutics and Diagnostics and Abbott.

North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition
The Association of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Nurses
North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition Foundation
The NASPGHAN Council For Pediatric Nutrition Professionals
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