IBD Basics: Methotrexate

What is Methotrexate & Why is it important? Methotrexate is part of a group of medication called immunosuppressants. They work to help  reduces inflammation in the body by dampening down the activity of the immune system. It works particular well at controlling the inflammation in the gut, helpful for IBD. As IBD is an autoimmune response to too much active…

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IBD Basics: Immunosuppressants

What are Immunosuppressant & Why are they important? Immunosuppressants are drugs which damped down the immune system. They can also be called Immunomodulators; as they modify the immune’s response to a proposed threat to the body. IBD is an auto immune disorder, in which the immune system over reacts to inflammation. The cause is still unknown, but treatment plans usually look…

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IBD Basics: Azathioprine & Mercaptopurine – 6-MPs

What are 6-MPs? & Why are they important? Azathioprine and Mercaptopurine are members of the thiopurine family of medication, and they are used to treat both UC and Crohn’s disease; the most common types of IBD. Whilst they get used for both types of IBD, 6-MP’s are more widely used in UC, but only by a small margin. 1 in 5…

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IBD Basics: Aminosalicylates – 5ASAs

What are 5 ASA’s & Why are they important? Aminosalicylates – or 5ASAs – are a type of medication used to treat both Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis; but have been proven to be more effective in UC to independently induce and maintain remission in mild to moderate UC. They work by reducing the inflammation in the mucous lining of the…

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IBD Basics: Corticosteriods

What are Corticosteroids & Why are they important? Corticosteriods are a group of anti inflammatory medications – including cortisone, hydrocortisone and prednisone – which mimic the hormones produced by the adrenal gland, which lies above the kidneys. The hormones created by the adrenal gland have many functions but one in particular is that is the ability to heal inflammation; particularly in…

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The What and Why: Vitamin D

What is Vitamin D? Vitamin D is a nutrient needed to help control our absorption of calcium and phosphate entering our body from our diet. These particular minerals are important for healthy bones, teeth and muscles. Vitamin D is created from direct sunlight on our skin when we are outdoors. It is abundant in the months from April to October…

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The What and Why: Vitamin B12

Teeny tiny vials of energy It was when I was in the throes of being assessed for surgery, we discovered that removal of my terminal ileum – my first surgery; right hemicolectomy – would mean I would need Vitamin B12 injection following my recovery. What is Vitamin B12? It is an important vitamin needed in the body to help keep…

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