Treatment plan for Crohn's disease
A management plan is a very personal item. It is a roadmap of
how you, with help from your healthcare specialist, can manage your
illness. It will help you understand your illness and its symptoms, what
medications to take, what alternative therapies might be suitable at any
given time, where to look for support. But most importantly, your
management plan enables you to actively participate in managing your
illness. The information in this section will explain in some
detail what a management plan is and how you can be proactive in
managing your Crohn's disease.
a treatment management plan?
management plan is your roadmap to managing Crohn's disease. It will
also help you better understand your illness. You can use it to help
track your progress over time and know what to do if a problem arises.
Together, you and your doctor will develop your plan to include
information such as:
Your medication and how and when to take it
often to check back with your doctor to re-evaluate how you are
Signs and symptoms to watch for, what to do and who to contact
Next steps if your current treatment doesn't work or if your illness
Other treatments or approaches to help manage your illness, such as
nutrition, exercise, counselling, symptom-specific medication or
other lifestyle changes
Resources you can turn to for additional support, such as a nurse
hotline or patient associations offering Crohn's disease support
groups in your area.
Ideally, your management plan will be written down so you can keep it
with you and refer to it whenever you want. It should be flexible so
that you and your doctor can revisit it regularly and make adjustments
from time to time.
members of your healthcare team may also be involved in developing and
following your management plan, such as a nurse, nutritionist, surgeon,
general practitioner and pharmacist. Caregivers, spouses and other
family members or friends who are involved in your care may also be
involved in the process.
plan may also reflect personal objectives such as being able to travel
regularly, continue to work full-time, or care for children or an
elderly parent, and the care designed to support those objectives.
Getting the most from your management plan
with Crohn's disease can have many twists and turns, and your management
plan can help you and your loved ones navigate the bumps in the road as
well as the smooth stretches along the way. Most importantly, a
management plan gives you a clear understanding of how you and your
doctor are working together to get your illness under control, and keep
it under control. It can bring peace of mind when you are unsure of the
next step or wondering what will happen if your Crohn's disease changes,
or its management doesn't go the way you expected. It can help remind
you why it is important to continue taking your treatment as prescribed.
It also represents your joint commitment to managing your illness and
staying on track with your treatment.
You and your healthcare team: a partnership
gastroenterologist is a trained specialist in Crohn's disease and is
usually your main point of contact for treatment, managing your symptoms
and ensuring your general health and well-being. In some situations,
your main point of contact may be your general practitioner, with input
from a gastroenterologist or surgeon. Some hospitals also have nurse
specialists who are specially trained to help people with Crohn's
disease, and they can provide education, support and act as a liaison
between the hospital and the community in providing your care.
matter which of these scenarios you are in, you should ideally work with
your doctor and other members of your healthcare team to develop a plan
that reflects your treatment goals and expectations. The more involved
you are in the process, and the more open and honest you are about your
needs, wishes, preferences and concerns, the more relevant and useful
the plan will be for you.
your plan is developed, in between doctor visits, your role in managing
your illness is very important. Here are some of the most important
things you can do to stay in control of your Crohn's disease:
involved in the proactive management of your own health every day
Know when and how to take care of your general health
Follow your management plan and take your medication
questions if you are concerned, and seek help if a problem arises