The digestive system is made up of your 5 to 6 metre-long gastrointestinal (GI) tract, liver, pancreas and gallbladder. The organs of your digestive system work together to digest your food, turning it into nutrients and energy.
A digestive condition covers any health problem in our digestive tract, and symptoms usually involve stomach pain, constipation, diarrhoea, heartburn or bloating.
Acid reflux, more commonly called ‘heartburn’, is a painful sensation caused by stomach acid travelling up the ‘food-pipe’ (oesophagus) and towards the throat.
Acute cholecystitis is inflammation of the gallbladder, usually caused by a gallstone blocking the cystic duct. Find out more about symptoms, causes, and how it's diagnosed and treated.
An anal fissure is a small tear or ulcer in the thin tissue lining the large intestine, close to the anus. It typically causes pain and bleeding during bowel movements. We look at the causes of anal fissures and outline how they’re diagnosed and treated.
Appendicitis is a painful condition where the appendix, a 3.5 inch-long pouch of tissue attached to the large intestine, becomes inflamed and swells. Learn more about the signs and symptoms, and how it's treated.
If you have infrequent bowel movements or have problems with bowel movements, you likely have constipation. Here we look at the causes, treatment and prevention.
Crohn’s disease is a lifelong condition that causes inflammation in your digestive system. There’s no cure, but it’s often possible to manage the symptoms with the right treatment.
Diarrhoea is when your poo becomes looser and more frequent than usual. It’s often caused by a stomach bug and you may experience vomiting too. It can be very uncomfortable and tiring, but should go away on its own in a few days.
Diverticular disease and diverticulitis are related digestive conditions that affect the large intestine (bowel). Find out more about symptoms, treatment and prevention.
Faecal impaction is when dry hard, dry poo gets stuck in your gut. It can happen if you have been severely constipated. Read on to find out about its treatments and symptoms.
A fatty liver is when too much fat starts to accumulate in the liver. It is either called non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) or alcoholic fatty liver disease (ARLD). We explain the key symptoms of fatty liver and investigate the causes.
Gallstones are small stones that form in your gallbladder – a small organ on the right side of your tummy. The condition affects 1 in 10 people in the UK. Only some people will develop symptoms and those that do often need surgery to remove their gallbladder.
Gastritis is inflammation of the stomach lining. It’s a common condition that has several possible causes – discover the symptoms and how it’s treated.
If you have gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, the acid from your stomach comes back up into your gullet (oesophagus), irritating it and causing heartburn. It’s not usually serious, but it can cause pain and discomfort – find out about the symptoms and how to ease them.
Gastroenteritis is a common condition usually caused by a viral or bacterial infection and often gives you sickness and diarrhoea. Find out more about the symptoms of gastroenteritis and how to treat it.
Gastroparesis is a condition that affects the stomach’s muscle movement and means that it can’t empty food as quickly as it should. Read about the common symptoms and causes.
Hernias happen when there’s a weakness or opening in the muscle or tissue and an internal part of the body pushes through. We explain the different types of hernia and how they can be treated.
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a condition used to describe Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and microscopic colitis. In these diseases, your intestines are inflamed which often causes tummy discomfort. Read on to find out more.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common long-term condition of the gut that affects how the digestive system works. It can cause stomach cramps, bloating, constipation and diarrhoea. Find out more about the symptoms and causes.
Jaundice is when the skin or whites of your eyes turn yellow. This can be a sign of liver, blood or pancreatic disease and you should see a doctor to find the cause of your symptoms.
Microscopic colitis is a disease in which your gut is inflamed. The main symptom is watery diarrhoea. Keep reading to find out more about the causes and management for this condition.
Pancreatitis is a condition where your pancreas is inflamed. When the inflammation happens over a short time, it’s called acute pancreatitis, and when it builds up over a longer time, it’s called chronic pancreatitis. Find out about the causes and symptoms.
Piles (also called haemorrhoids) are enlarged blood vessels inside the rectum or under the skin around the anus that can create small, round lumps. We explain what causes them and what to do if you have them.
A stomach ulcer occurs when the protective mucus lining the stomach breaks down over time and causes a sore. Find out why they happen and what changes you can make to your lifestyle to improve your stomach health.
Ulcerative colitis happens when the bowel and rectum become inflamed over a long time. This causes ulcers to form. Find out why it happens and what changes you can make to your lifestyle to improve your bowel health.