Surgical Options for IBD

Most people think of surgery as a “last resort.” However, surgery can be an important part of treating both Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. In fact, a large proportion of IBD patients will require surgery at some point during their illness.

Occasionally, a patient will need surgery on an urgent or emergency basis to remove the bowel or correct other problems related to IBD.

In most cases, however, an operation is used to supplement the medical treatments that are available. Surgery is best used in conjunction with medical therapy, and in selected cases, surgery may best be used early in the course of the disease.

IBD Surgical Goals

The goals for IBD surgery include:

  • Reducing or resolving symptoms
  • Improving general health
  • Improving nutritional status, growth and sexual development
  • Preserving as much bowel as possible

If IBD surgery is recommended for your child, you should discuss this decision with the entire health team, which usually consists of multiple specialists that may include a pediatric gastroenterologist, pediatric surgeon, nurse practitioner, nutritionist, and psychologist.

For More Information

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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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