Differential diagnosis of Crohn’s disease: a literature review

Fausta Majauskaitė1

1Faculty of Medicine, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania 


Background: Crohn‘s disease is one out of the few inflammatory bowel diseases. The increasing number of cases and the similarity of the symptoms occurring in other intestinal disorders are associated with the need for more accurate differential diagnosis.

Methods: the medical publications presented in this work were selected using the following databases: PubMed, Medline and Google Scholar. A 5-year limit has been chosen as a time criterion and certain keywords were used to find articles.

Results. The symptoms of intestinal tuberculosis, chronic enteropathy, Behcet’s disease and schistomyasis may mimic the symptoms of Crohn’s disease. Although the clinical manifestations of these diseases and the findings of the clinical tests may be similar, it is important to properly evaluate the symptoms, the results of laboratory tests and the visual bowel minimally invasive imaging examination.

Conclusions. Laboratory tests or the visual imaging examinations alone is often not enough to make a proper diagnosis. A combination of symptoms, laboratory and visual imaging findings is required to properly diagnose the discussed diseases.

Keywords: inflammatory bowel diseases, Crohn’s disease, differential diagnosis.