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Zainab, a 17-year-old from Pakistan, was treated for Crohn’s disease at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC) in Abu Dhabi. Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: A multidisciplinary treatment plan helped a teenager in Abu Dhabi to bring her inflammatory bowel disease under control. Zainab, a 17-year-old from Pakistan, has been treated for Crohn’s disease at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC) here. The patient’s condition is now in remission.

“I was an 11-year-old when I first met the team at SKMC. Prior to that, I was not able to live a normal childhood. My symptoms were getting out of control and there seemed to be no end in sight. I am thankful to the team at SKMC who have been treating me for over five years now,” Zainab said.

Debilitating condition

Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic inflammation in the digestive tract. It can present with abdominal pain, severe diarrhoea, fatigue, weight loss and malnutrition. If left undiagnosed, or in the absence of proper treatment, the condition can be debilitating.

However, new therapies can greatly reduce the symptoms and also enable remission.

Zainab was first presented to SKMC with abdominal pain and constant diarrhoea, along with general weakness. Investigations revealed that the patient was suffering from Crohn’s disease and a treatment plan was designed.

Immediate improvement

Almost immediately after the treatment started, the young patient’s condition improved significantly, with a slowing in her diarrhoea. She was also able to gain mass till she reached a healthy body weight.

“A multi-disciplinary treatment plan that considers all aspects of a child’s lifestyle is extremely important when treating Crohn’s, especially to ensure that the child thrives physically, mentally and socially. Thanks to our holistic approach to caring for such patients, the condition of Zainab and others like her have continued to improve significantly,” said Dr Mohammed Miqdady, the head of the Paediatric Gastroenterology Division at SKMC.

SEHA Dr. Mohammed Miqdady-1633240952442
Dr Mohammed Miqdady, head of the Paediatric Gastroenterology Division at SKMC. Image Credit: Supplied

‘Medicine in a constant journey’

“A common issue with inflammatory bowel diseases is misdiagnosis and late diagnosis. I am hopeful that a more streamlined diagnosis process and better treatment options will be available in the future. 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 [Inflammatory Bowel Disease] — more specifically, Crohn’s Disease. Here, at SKMC, we provide a medical fellowship training in Paediatric GI [gastrointestinal], where we conduct several research tasks on different Paediatric GI diseases. There is always hope for a brighter future for all our paediatric patients,” Dr Miqdady assured.

“The team never stopped trying new therapies and treatments to help me get better. I have eventually progressed into remission, with all my symptoms now under control,” Zainab said.