Causes of Crohn's disease
Causes of Crohn's disease
Crohn's disease is an autoimmune disorder of unknown cause, although genetically susceptible individuals have a higher risk for developing Crohn's disease. Environmental agents are also thought to trigger the disease.
List of causes of Crohn's disease
Following is a list of causes or underlying conditions
(see also Misdiagnosis of underlying causes of Crohn's disease)
that could possibly cause Crohn's disease includes:
- The exact cause of Crohn disease remains unknown. Current theories implicate the role of genetic, microbial, immunologic, environmental, dietary, vascular, and even psychosocial factors as potential causative agents
- Imbalance between proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators
- Research shows that the inflammation seen in the GI tract of people with Crohn's disease involves several factors: the genes the patient has inherited, the immune system itself, and the environment. Foreign substances, also referred to as antigens, are found in the environment. One possible cause for inflammation may be the body's reaction to these antigens, or that the antigens themselves are the cause for the inflammation. Some scientists think that a protein produced by the immune system, called anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF), may be a possible cause for the inflammation associated with Crohn's disease
Crohn's disease Causes: Risk Factors
The following conditions have been cited in various
sources as potentially causal risk factors
related to Crohn's disease:
Crohn's disease: Related Medical Conditions
To research the causes of Crohn's disease, consider researching the causes of these
these diseases that may be similar, or associated with Crohn's disease:
Crohn's disease: Causes and Types
Causes of Broader Categories of Crohn's disease: Review the causal information about the various more general categories of medical conditions:
Crohn's disease as a symptom:
Conditions listing Crohn's disease
as a symptom may also be potential underlying causes of Crohn's disease.
Our database lists the following as having
Crohn's disease as a symptom of that condition:
What causes Crohn's disease?
Causes: Crohn's disease:
Researchers have not yet determined the cause of Crohn's disease. One theory is that it is the result of an over-reactive immune response to food and other substances in the GI tract. Normally the body's immune response is a protective reaction to foreign potentially dangerous substances in the body, such as viruses. In Crohn's disease, an over-reactive immune response may result in symptoms, such as diarrhea and abdominal pain. There may also be a familial connection with Crohn's disease. About 20% of people with the condition have blood relatives with Crohn's disease or some other form of inflammatory bowel disease, such as ulcerative colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome.
Genes and Disease by the National Center for Biotechnology (Excerpt)
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a group of chronic disorders that causes inflammation or ulceration in the small and large intestines. Most often, IBD is classified either as ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease. While ulcerative colitis affects the inner lining of the colon and rectum, Crohn's disease extends into the deeper layers of the intestinal wall. It is a chronic condition and may recur at various times over a lifetime.
(Source: Genes and Disease by the National Center for Biotechnology)
Crohn's Disease: NIDDK (Excerpt)
Theories about what causes Crohn's disease
abound, but none has been proven. The most popular theory is that the
body's immune system reacts to a virus or a bacterium by causing ongoing
inflammation in the intestine.
People with Crohn's disease tend to have abnormalities of the immune
system, but doctors do not know whether these abnormalities are a cause or
result of the disease. Crohn's disease is not caused by emotional
(Source: excerpt from Crohn's Disease: NIDDK)
Related information on causes of Crohn's disease:
As with all medical conditions,
there may be many causal factors.
Further relevant information on causes of Crohn's disease may be found in: