Ulcerative Colitis (UC) is a chronic disease which affects the large intestine (colon) and includes characteristic ulcers or open sores in the colon. The main symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis are usually abdominal pain, diarrhea mixed with blood of gradual onset. The disease may also affect parts of the body outside the intestine producing symptoms resembling arthritis. Ulcerative Colitis is an intermittent disease with periods of exacerbated symptoms and periods that are relatively symptom free.
Although Ulcerative Colitis has no known cause, there is a presumed genetic component predisposing to inflammation.
According to Datamonitor, in 2010, in the United States, the total prevalence of Ulcerative Colitis was estimated to be approximately of 854,000 cases and the prevalence of Crohn’s Disease was 526,500 cases.
In Europe prevalence of Ulcerative Colitis could be as high as 940,000 patients, and this basis is growing faster than the US.