What Are the Main Treatments for IBD?

  • Most treatments for IBD include anti-inflammatory medicine, antibiotics or enteral nutrition. People with IBD have inflammation in their gastrointestinal tract that should not be there. Anti-inflammatory medicines calm down this inflammation. As a result, some of these anti-inflammatory medicines make it more likely that the person taking them will get an infection. Some anti-inflammatory medicine can also increase your risk for certain kinds of cancer.
  • There are many anti-inflammatory medicines and other treatments that are described in separate handouts. Ask your doctor for these handouts if you do not already have them.

How Do I Choose the Best Treatment for My Child?

  • The most important thing about choosing the right medicine for you is balancing the risks and benefits. Every medicine has side effects (including Tylenol, Advil and Benadryl). Although there are risks with all IBD medicines, these are usually small risks. These risks should be compared with the symptoms people with IBD have without medicine. It is worthwhile to talk about specific medicines with your gastroenterologist as well.

What Should I Know Before Starting Treatment?

  • Before starting any medicine for IBD, make sure to ask your doctor any questions you may have about the medicine. Make sure you know exactly how much and how often each medicine should be taken.
  • In the pages that follow, we talk about many of the medications that we use to treat IBD. There is a picture of many of these pills on each page. Sometimes, drug companies will change the size of pills so the sizes and shapes may change.

Rev. 11/2013

This document is intended to provide health related information so that you may be better informed. It is not a substitute for a doctor's medical advice and should not be relied upon for treatment for specific medical conditions.