The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. The doctor will attempt to rule out other conditions, such as infection, that may be causing your symptoms. If you are diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease, testing can also be used to monitor the disease and assess complications.
Tests may include:
The colon and rectum can be examined with:
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Imaging tests evaluate the intestines and surrounding structures. These may include:
A biopsy may be taken during these tests. A biopsy is a sample of the intestinal tissue that can be examined under a microscope.
Crohn disease in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T114217/Crohn-disease-in-adults. Updated May 16, 2018. Accessed December 21, 2018.
IBD. American Gastroenterological Association website. Available at: https://www.gastro.org/practice-guidance/gi-patient-center/topic/inflammatory-bowel-disease-ibd. Accessed December 21, 2018.
Ulcerative colitis in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T114507/Ulcerative-colitis-in-adults. Updated October 26, 2018. Accessed December 21, 2018.
What are Crohn's & colitis? Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America website. Available at:
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Accessed December 21, 2018.
7/6/2015 DynaMed Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T114217/Crohn-disease-in-adults: Kim DH, Carucci LR, Baker ME, et al. American College of Radiology appropriateness criteria for Crohn disease. Available at: https://acsearch.acr.org/docs/69470/Narrative. Updated 2014.
Last reviewed September 2018 by
EBSCO Medical Review BoardDaus Mahnke, MD
Last Updated: 11/20/2020