What are the signs and symptoms of Crohn disease?

Updated: Jul 26, 2019
  • Author: Leyla J Ghazi, MD; Chief Editor: Praveen K Roy, MD, AGAF  more...
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See Autoimmune Disorders: Making Sense of Nonspecific Symptoms, a Critical Images slideshow, to help identify several diseases that can cause a variety of nonspecific symptoms.

Signs and symptoms

The characteristic presentation in Crohn disease is abdominal pain and diarrhea, which may be complicated by intestinal fistulization or obstruction. Unpredictable flares and remissions characterize the long-term course. [1, 2, 3]

Other signs and symptoms of Crohn disease may include the following:

  • Rectal bleeding

  • Fever

  • Weight loss, anorexia

  • Nausea, vomiting

  • Malnutrition, vitamin deficiencies

  • Generalized fatigability

  • Bone loss

  • Psychosocial issues (eg, depression, anxiety, and coping difficulty); pediatric patients may also experience psychological issues regarding quality of life and body image [4, 5]

  • Growth failure in pediatric patients: May precede gastrointestinal symptoms by years

See Clinical Presentation for more detail.

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