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Should I self-medicate for ulcerative colitis flares?

ANSWER

Unless your doctor says it's OK, don't self-medicate during an ulcerative colitis flare.

Something you have in your medicine cabinet from a previous flare might've helped you in the past. But have those meds expired? And are they right for you this time? Check with your doctor first.

SOURCES:

CDC: "Inflammatory Bowel Disease."

Leyla J. Ghazi, assistant professor of medicine, and gastroenterologist specializing in inflammatory bowel disease, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore.

Thomas Cataldo, MD, visiting assistant professor of surgery, Harvard Medical School; staff surgeon in colon and rectal surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston.

Roberta Muldoon, assistant professor of surgery, Division of General/Colorectal Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville.

American Society of Colon & Rectal Surgeons: "Ulcerative Colitis."

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on October 10, 2018

SOURCES:

CDC: "Inflammatory Bowel Disease."

Leyla J. Ghazi, assistant professor of medicine, and gastroenterologist specializing in inflammatory bowel disease, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore.

Thomas Cataldo, MD, visiting assistant professor of surgery, Harvard Medical School; staff surgeon in colon and rectal surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston.

Roberta Muldoon, assistant professor of surgery, Division of General/Colorectal Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville.

American Society of Colon & Rectal Surgeons: "Ulcerative Colitis."

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on October 10, 2018

NEXT QUESTION:

Should I consider surgery for ulcerative colitis flares?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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