UAE: Teen with Crohn’s enjoys normal life after treatment, therapies

Ashwani Kumar /Abu Dhabi Filed on October 1, 2021

(Supplied photo)

Though there is no cure, the right treatment plan, along with a healthy lifestyle, can allow those with Crohn's disease to lead a normal life

At a young age, Pakistani teen Zainab suffered from abdominal pain, weakness and failed to thrive as an active and healthy child.

But following a multidisciplinary treatment plan and therapies at Skeikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC) in Abu Dhabi, Zainab, who has Crohn's disease, has returned to normal life.

Chron's disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that causes chronic inflammation in the digestive tract. This may lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhoea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition.

Though there is no cure, the right treatment plan, along with a healthy lifestyle, can allow those with Crohn's disease to lead a normal life, which is the case for 17-year-old Zainab.

Zainab first visited SKMC, part of Abu Dhabi Health Service Company (Seha), when she was 11.

A thorough examination, including endoscopy, colonoscopy and biopsy, confirmed that she had Crohn's disease.

A treatment plan was initiated to improve Zainab’s gastrointestinal tract and associated symptoms. Almost immediately, her condition improved significantly. Her constant diarrhoea slowed, and she was able to gain and maintain a healthy body weight, without any side effects to the medications and treatment plan.

Dr Mohamad Miqdady, division chief, paediatric gastroenterologist, SKMC, said: “A multidisciplinary treatment plan that considers all aspects of a child’s lifestyle is extremely important when treating Crohn’s, to make sure the child thrives physically, mentally and socially. I am proud the health of Zainab and others like her continue to improve significantly, thanks to our holistic approach to caring for patients.”

A relieved Zainab has been able to now lead an active life and continue her studies.

“I was an 11-year-old when I first met the team at SKMC, prior to which I was really not living my childhood. My symptoms were getting out of control and there seemed to be no end in sight," she said.

Zainab expressed her gratitude to the SKMC team, who have been treating her for more than five years.

"The team never stopped trying new therapies and treatments to help me get better and eventually progress into remission, with all my symptoms now under control," she said.


>> UAE: Support group launched for patients suffering from inflammatory bowel disease

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Dr Miqdady added that a common issue with inflammatory bowel diseases is misdiagnosis and late diagnosis.

“Medicine is in a constant journey of research and advancement, and there is currently a significant amount of research being conducted to further improve and strengthen the diagnosis and treatment approach to IBD, more specifically, Crohn’s Disease," he said.


Ashwani Kumar

I am a newspaperman from the emirate of Abu Dhabi. A journalist at heart. I get my stories from the streets. A south Indian born in the Hindi heartland, I easily connect with people from different nationalities and cultures. I am calm like a monk, sensitive and very patient reporter. On the ground, I cover a range of topics related to community, health, embassy, tourism, transport, business and sports. I will go out on a leg to do what’s right and stand by what I believe in.

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