Cryptitis: A term that is used to describe one of the abnormalities that is seen under the microscope when small intestinal or colonic tissue is examined. The intestinal crypts are tubular structures composed of cells that protrude from the inner lining of the intestines and into the walls of the intestines. These crypts contain the cells that give rise to all the other cells that move out of the crypts and eventually line the inner lining of the intestines. Inflammation of the crypts is known as cryptitis. Cryptitis is seen in inflammatory bowel disease, both Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis, but it also can be seen in other inflammatory conditions of the intestines. It is not a disease itself but a histologic manifestation of several different diseases.
Cryptitis also may refer to inflammation in the anus. Two centimeters from the anal orifice (anus) the lining tissue of the anus begins to change into the specialized lining of the colon. This junction is called the pectinate line. At the pectinate line are small mounds of tissue that protrude into the anal canal. Between these protrusions into the anus are small out-pouchings from the anus and into the surrounding tissues. These out-pouchings are the anal crypts. Although they are covered with flaps of anal lining tissue, the anal crypts communicate with the anus and colon above. Inflammation of the crypts, probably caused by the trauma of passing stool and/or infection, is referred to as cryptitis. If infection progresses, it can extend further into the surrounding tissues and lead to the formation of an abscess or fistula.
Author:Jay W. Marks, M.D.
Crypto: Popular name for both the parasite, Cryptosporidium parvum, and the disease it causes, cryptosporidiosis.
Infection with fungus (usually in a yeast form) from the genus Cryptococcus, such as Cryptococcus neoformans or Cryptococcus gattii. Cryptococcosis is generally a rare condition, but about 7%-15% of people with AIDS may acquire the infection. Infection is rare but can also occur in people with a normally functioning immune system. The infection can manifest […]
- Cryptococcus gattii
Cryptococcus gattii: A rare form of yeast (fungus) that is airborne and may be acquired by inhalation. Although typically found in tropical and subtropical areas, C. gattii has become endemic in the Pacific Northwest, with multiple infections having been reported on Vancouver Island and in mainland British Columbia. Several reports of infections in the northwestern […]
- Cryptococcus neoformans
Cryptococcus neoformans: A fungus that occurs worldwide and is mainly found in debris around pigeon roosts and soil contaminated with decaying pigeon or chicken droppings. The infection is acquired by inhalation, and those infected may display a range of symptoms ranging from colonization of the airways without any symptoms to severe pneumonia. Spread to the […]