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Ulcerative Colitis Santa Monica, CA

Long-lasting inflammation and ulcers in the large intestine and rectum are signs of ulcerative colitis. This inflammatory bowel disease is usually a slowly developing illness which, left untreated, can lead to life-threatening complications.

Once ulcerative colitis develops, there is no cure; however, there are treatments that can minimize symptoms and reduce the effects of this chronic condition. In many cases, remission of the disease can be achieved.

There are several types of ulcerative colitis. The type is classified according to its position within the colon. The exact cause of the disease has yet to be discovered, but stress and diet do seem to influence it. Heredity may be a factor since it is more common in people who have family members with the disease, but there are many who have it and do not have any family history of it.

Drug therapy or surgery are used to treat ulcerative colitis. The type of treatment recommended is based on the severity of the condition. Individuals respond differently to the various drugs, so it may take some time for your doctor to find the ideal drug for you. Side effects from the drugs must also be taken into consideration.

Types of Treatment

Reducing inflammation with the use of prescription anti-inflammatory drugs is the initial step in treatment of ulcerative colitis. Moderate and severe cases may require the use of corticosteroids like prednisone or hydrocortisone if other anti-inflammatories are not effective. These drugs are given short-term due to their side effects.

Immune system suppressors are also used to treat the inflammation. These drugs suppress the immune system response that initiates the inflammation process. Some patients respond better to combinations of drugs rather than one drug.

Other medications are used to manage ulcerative colitis symptoms. Before using any over-the-counter drugs, talk with your doctor. Dr. Michael may have recommendations for addressing your symptoms.

Surgery is used to eliminate ulcerative colitis, but it also means the removal of the entire colon for most patients. In one type of surgical procedure, the colon is removed, and a bag is constructed from the end of the small intestine. This bag is connected to the anus, which allows for relatively normal elimination of waste. This procedure removes the need for a bag outside of the body.

When construction of a pouch in the body is not possible, the surgeon must create a permanent opening in the abdomen. The stool is then passed from the body to an attached bag.

Symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis

A person may experience many or only a few of the symptoms of the disease. The severity of the inflammation and its location can affect symptoms also. The signs and symptoms of ulcerative colitis include:

  • Abdominal pain or cramping
  • Diarrhea, possibly with blood or pus
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Inability to defecate
  • Rectal bleeding or pain
  • Urgency to defecate
  • Weight loss

Children with ulcerative colitis may fail to grow. Symptoms for most people are usually mild to moderate. There may also be extended periods of remission with the disease.

A thorough examination and testing can determine if you have ulcerative colitis. If you are experiencing symptoms, contact Dr. Michael to schedule an appointment.

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Our Patient Reviews

Brent J. Michael, MD

4.7 / 5.0

Based on 34 reviews

Tammy Siever

Dr. Michael is the most Caring Dr. I have had the privilege of having taking care of my health needs. His calm and personal demeanor is above and beyond what I have ever experienced. I have never had issues with the the waiting time but, if ever I did I would not complain because he is worth the wait. I get his complete attention the entire visit. When I leave I feel very confident that he has completely covered my heath needs from head to toe. I would recommend him to anyone who wants is concerned or wants a Dr. to be concerned about their health.

Gianpaolo von Nacher

Dr. Michael has been our family doctor for over 10 years. He has always been the main pillar in our family care; specially a few years ago when my father wouldn’t have been able to get through a very difficult period without his care. He always goes the extra mile. His staff is amazing. Anita, his nurse, always efficient, loving and caring. Aileen, in the front desk, always responsive and helpful. I’m very grateful to have them on our side.

Mark B

I could literally write pages about Dr. Michael. I thankfully met him and his staff over 13 years ago after I had been suffering from a serious lung infection for over a month that 2 other doctors had missed.- 1 due to being totally arrogant and thinking I just had a cold. I was burning up and so sick I could barely walk. Dr. Michael took the time and actually listened to me - instead of just saying its probably just the flu (as the other doctors had done) or just a cold and sending me home, he actually did a complete physical on me an then had the intuition to order a chest x ray on me (I was not even coughing at the time) and then really looked at it and discovered that I actually had a really serious lung infection and started me on antibiotics. While this may sound like no big deal - it actually was, as he actually saw that it was not a normal looking lung infection and I later learned he went above and beyond and had a infectious disease specialist look at the x ray just to be safe and as he suspected it was even more serious. Since that day he has always been my main doctor. I would also like to add that I have a serious long term health condition and most doctors would generally attribute many of my current and past health issues to my main condition (it usually is the case) but Dr. Michael always looks at whatever is happening to me at the moment as if I was a new patient. This is probably his biggest talent and gift as a doctor as he has on more than one occasion over the years thought outside the box with me and has figured out quickly why I was sick at the time - sometimes it was minor but more than a few times it was really serious. His quick way of thinking and knowledge and intuition is what kept me from getting sicker and going into the hospital. If you are looking for a doctor that actually treats you like a person and not a number then see this man. I am not a celebrity or a wealthy person - far from it - but he treats me like I am - many Vets like myself go to the VA and its a great blessing but I just do not have the energy to go there as its so big. Dr. Michael is seriously brilliant and really patient and I am truly thankful I found him.

Edward Dragavon

Dr. Michael takes the time to explain the meaning of medical terms and test results in a way that a lay person can understand. He is very thorough and answers any question that you may have. His staff is also very professional and competent at their tasks. Given a choice, I wouldn't go anywhere else.

Tim Whalen

Dr. Michael is an intelligent caring human being who is focused on positive outcomes. He has a great ability to synthesize the details of lab results and other tests into preventive measures. I greatly respect his approach to care.

William Barry

A very smart and caring doctor. Very intuitive and yet he will base his decisions on test data. Patient for over 10 years. 5 stars

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logo Brent J. Michael, MD Santa Monica, CA

Brent J. Michael, MD

2001 Santa Monica Blvd, Suite 880W
Santa Monica, CA 90404



Mon-Fri: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM