Gastrointestinal Disorders

Dr. Maryam Dadkhah is specially trained in the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders. Contact EatWellGuru at one of our four Virginia locations in Sterling, Alexandria, Vienna, or Annandale to learn more about how she can help you manage your gastrointestinal disorder.

Gastrointestinal Disorders Q & A

by Maryam Dadkhah, Ph.D., RDN, CPT

What is a Gastrointestinal Disorder?

Gastrointestinal disorders affect a person’s ability to consume and digest food. These disorders result in inadequate absorption of nutrients, elimination problems including constipation, diarrhea, irritable bowel, and/or cancer developing anywhere along the GI tract. Nausea and vomiting are other common symptoms of these conditions.

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a disorder of the intestines. It causes abdominal pain, cramping or bloating, and diarrhea and/or constipation. The symptoms can differ from day to day. The causes of the condition often vary between different people. IBS can be the result of issues with the way signals are sent between the digestive tract and the brain, problems digesting particular foods, and stress or anxiety. Those with IBS might also have uniquely sensitive intestines or problems with intestinal muscle movement. In some cases, particular foods, stress, hormonal changes, and certain antibiotics can trigger discomfort and symptoms. IBS is a chronic condition but there are many treatment options and dietary advice which can help a person to find relief.

What is Crohn’s Disease?

Crohn's disease causes inflammation of the lining inside of the digestive tract, resulting in irritation and pain to the abdominal area. Severe diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, and malnutrition can also become present when suffering from Crohn’s disease. The disease may affect different parts of the digestive tract in different patients. The inflammation can spread deeper into the bowel tissue affecting those layers, as well. Crohn's disease can be painful, debilitating, and possibly life-threatening if complications arise. There is no known cure for stopping Crohn's disease but treatment can make it more manageable.

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac disease, which is also known as celiac sprue or gluten-sensitive enteropathy, is a digestive and autoimmune disorder which causes damage to the lining of the small intestine when foods with gluten are consumed. This damage can make it difficult for the body to absorb nutrients, particularly calcium, iron, fat, and folate.

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