Ulcerative Colitis Tips


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C. Difficile – I feel like I’m 80 Years Old

Hey Everyone.. I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis about 6 years ago. I can’t believe it’s been that long. I am a teacher and have been lucky enough to have my classroom located quite close to the staff bathroom… I’m pretty sure that I count down the minutes till the end of class more so than my students. At the end of the school year I was diagnosed with a sever ear and sinus infection. I was prescribed with multiple antibiotics. This led to my current situation.

I went to my regular doctor to get a referral for my ear, nose and throat doctor. He put me on an antibiotic called Clindamycin. Well apparently antibiotics kill off all of the bacteria in your gut, well it did it’s job. Then this evil C. Difficle bacteria took over… it was a complete coup d’├ętat. I was told that the C. Diff was causing a new type of colitis that affects your entire colon and not just the lower part that I had issues with. I thought that my colitis was bad….. oh was I wrong. I was doubled over in pain in the bathroom, thinking that my intestines were going to explode. I ended up in the hospital for a few hours and they put me on vancomycin. I haven’t left my apartment in weeks. I have watched more Judge Mathis than I am willing to admit. I am 31, single and going to remain that way if I don’t get out of this condo.. The only date I’m going to get is to the public restroom.. romantic I know.

I am just looking for some other people’s experiences with C. Diff.

My Medications:

Lialda
canasa
asacol
flagyl
clindamycin
vancomycin

Submitted By: Emily

 

More C-Difficile Stories:

C-Difficile and Ulcerative Colitis

C-difficile and Antibiotics

 




c-diff bacteria

22 Responses to C. Difficile – I feel like I’m 80 Years Old

  1. Jessica July 5, 2011 at 9:18 pm #

    You sound like me! I’m 29, a teacher, have UC and ended up with c-diff last year! I spent about 3 months incredibly sick and trapped in my apartment. I feel your pain!! (It’s actually when I began doing online dating- plenty of time to email/weed through profiles! haha) I had a bad reaction to Flagyl but the Vanco got rid of the c-diff… once that was gone, then the UC could be treated. I’ve been free of c-diff for over a year, even when I took low-dose antibiotics in the spring (which did cause a UC flare). Good luck and keep your head up!!! :o)

  2. Carol July 11, 2011 at 8:32 am #

    My colitis was being controlled by medication for many years. In January I started taking Humira. The first 3 months were fine and it was nice not having to take so many pills. In late March I complained of excessive gas and cramping. They gave me a prescription for antibiotics. They also stopped 6MP. 3 weeks later I was in the worst pain ever and had symptoms like yours. I am also a teacher and I missed a week of school. I had lots of tests and finally my doctor put me on 40 mg of prednisone. My symptoms improved enough for me to go back to school for state testing. I went down to 30 mg of prednisone, then 20 mg., then 10. When I got down to 5 mg. I started to have symptoms again but milder ones. I tried to stop prednisone and that didn’t work well. I told my doctor that I just needed to get through the last two weeks of school so I went back on prednisone. Now I am trying to wean myself off it again. After your post, I am wondering if my problems started because of the antibiotics. I was thinking it was because I stopped the 6MP, now I am not so sure. This is frustrating. I hope you get better over the summer. It is probably a less stressful time for you.

  3. Christy August 31, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

    My son, who is in college, was diagnosed with UC about 2 years ago. In May, the week before finals, he flared, but made it through the end of school and came home. Just so you know, Carol, I doubt that you had C. Diff. My son was on Prednisone, first 30 mg., then 40, then 50. It actually kind of feeds the C Diff. By the time we realized that it was not just UC, he was in a bad way- couldn’t eat, drink, sleep, etc. He lost <30 lbs. in a month, and was hospitalized. Flagyl didn't do anything. Vancomycin did fight off the C Diff, but it took about 10 days before he had some kind of recovery and weeks before he was really feeling somewhat "normal". This last Friday he woke up, and told me that he might have C Diff again. He had pains in the night like he had previously. We called the doctor, went to the lab, and it was confirmed. The C Diff had returned. He was due to leave to college the next day. I was surprised that his doctor okayed it, as long as he felt up to it, and is careful with hygiene.
    One good thing is that he noticed the symptoms early, making it much easier to treat. He didn't get any of the terrible symptoms that he had previously.
    Bad thing is that I've read that If you've got the combination of UC and C Diff, it is likely to continue to recur.

    We are looking into trying to get Bacteriotherapy. It sounds really disgusting, but the cure rate is close to 100%, and it's supposed to cure the C Diff permanently most of the time. There are only a few clinics in the US that do this, and they are hard to get into. I'm researching for my son now. Good luck. You'll be in our prayers.

    • Barb December 5, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

      If you are still having problems there is a doctor in new york who will perform the fecal transplant it only took us 2 weeks to get in due to our reacurring c.diff problems he is a very nice doctor his name is dr lawerence brandt he is very educated on the subject. we did have to try the tapering method first and some one in the family will have to have est done to be a donor. Good Luck hope it is gone by now my daughter has been c.diff free for 6 months now.

    • Corie October 20, 2015 at 9:59 am #

      Hi Christy! How has your sons battle with UC and C.diff turned out. I’m going through a similar situation and am starting to wonder if the c.diff is ever going to go away and stay away. I’m on my third relapse. I would love some advice. I don’t trust my doctors anymore, I feel like I get tossed back and forth between my GI dr and infectious disease Doctor.

      Thank you!
      Corie

  4. shannon November 10, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    I had the same thing happen to me. But i was in the hospital for 12 days. So much pain an really felt like i could die. C diff is very hard to get over. Watch what you eat an fill up on probiotics.

  5. CC January 5, 2012 at 3:47 pm #

    April 2011 i had a sinus infection, i went to the doctor who gave me antibiotics, these didnt work so 5 days later i was given more,they didnt work infact it developed into a complete upper airways infection. I was experiencing severe abdominal pains, diorrhea with blood and mucus.I tested possitive for Helicobacter Pylori and was given 3 weeks of 2 courses of anti biotics to take at the same time.At the same time i was passing blood in the urine and was itchy all over, i had my kidney function tested and the kidneys and urinary tract where thankfully ok.I was then told by my Doctor that he thought i had UC or crohns, i developed severe mouth ulcers and a leg ulcer (which i was told are symptoms of both) over the summer i tested possitive for C-Diff. My consultant gastroenterologist said i had to come completely of anti biotics as i was unable to have a colonoscapy being so highly dosed on them and so sick as a result of them.I also developed a blood coagulation problem. They have tried to do colonoscapy since then but as the H-Pylori left me with stomach ulcers i was unable to hold the prep meds down so i still havnt had my biopsies taken. Iv had ear, throat and airway infections over autumn but was unable to have antibiotics, in november i suffered a suspected brain hemorrhage was only discharged from hospital because there was an outbreak of C-Diff and the risk was too high of me catching it again. I had to go on antibiotics in december as i developed a kidney infection which needed to be cleared.The long and short of it is that i was a healthy young mum, im now 22 years old with alot of bad health problems all caused by the administration of too many anti biotics, they do not always cure you and are not all they are made out to be. My consultant told me that the antibiotics had most definiteley caused the C-Diff and UC, they have admitted medical negligence in my case but im too sick to care. I wonder if anyone else on here has had a similar experience with antibiotics and C-Diff/UC?. Thankyou.

    • Brittany September 16, 2012 at 5:30 pm #

      CC, I have had intestinal issues for what seems like forever. I had my first colonoscopy done when I was 15 years old, I am now 22. I now Have a 2 and 3 year old and right after I had my first is when i started getting sick. Non stop diahhrea. I started getting soo much pain in my belly I finally started going to the doctor thinking it had to be my thyroid. Everything tested out okay but they put me on some antibiotics. Everytime I would take them I would get soo sick to my stomache, I ate with them and I don’t drink. The nurses couldn’t tell me why i was feeling this way and was trying to convince me that i had to of been drinking with the pills. I then called my pharmacy and asked her about my experience..it was then SHE..a PHARMACIST..NOT MY DOCTOR, informed me that I have C-DIFF. After many appts of trying to get this “situation” figured out I simpy gave up. I too was too sick to care anymore..with having 2 little guys and going to school full time 9 hours out of my day and having the doctors giving me no answers..i was done. Which brings me to right now. About 2 weeks ago I had to make an appointment in GI because I was in and out of the ER due to everything going in and not workng its way out. I was told in my appt I may have whats called Toxic Mega Colan. My Doctors jaw dropped when she looked at my chart and saw how many anti biotics I had been on since the “first” appt. when we found this all out. Now, Tuesday Sept. 18th I will be undergoing a procedure which i believe is called an anal rectum manomatry. My Colan seems to not be working properly and I may have to undergo surgery due to unnecessary Anti-Biotics. I am 22 years old, now 99 lbs and scared for my life.

    • Terri August 13, 2015 at 7:08 pm #

      I am so sorry you are going through all of this. Last Fall, my son was a healthy(little overweight) 9 year old boy. Had a ear and sinus infection and was given Amoxicillin. That didn’t work so, they gave him an adult dose of Cefdinir. CVS didn’t want to fill the prescription because they thought it was a mistake. He just made the adult dose because of his weight. A couple weeks after he finished, we saw red(were told Cefdinir could do that) but, it was blood. He was diagnosed with C Diff in Sept and Nov. They had him on Flagyl, then Vanco and another medicine for worms called Alinia(which he did not have). Seems like he would get a little better and then the blood and D. would come back. Right before Thanksgiving 2014, he had a colonoscopy and biopsy done. Doctor came in saying he has UC she’s seen it a million times. Biopsy and bloodwork go along with infection and not Crohns or UC, but they have him taking Apriso anyway. They were surprised with the results. He also had taken different steroid meds and eventually on Prednisone and Prilosec. Back to infectious disease because he’s sick again in Jan or Feb 2015 with C diff again. I had been told by some friends on a Cdiff forum to change from Prilosec to Zantac and started S Boulardi probiotics. He has a flex sigmoid scope in Feb and they said the biopsy goes along with UC. In March, I believe he caught the stomach flu and ended up in the hospital for 11-12 days. Now, it has been a year later. It has been a long road even since March. We weaned him off of the Apriso and he is doing amazing. Last March, he was also on 60 mg of Prednisone, zantac, 4 Apriso, and Entocort enemas. They also started Remicade. Now, I wonder if he had bad side effects to the Apriso? Every week, we would drop one pill and he would do a little better. Completely off of Apriso, formed stools, no blood, pain, nauseous, and his appetite is back. I don’t know how you can go from being completely healthy, to having c diff 3 times, then our choice in March was surgery or Remicade. All in 7 months? I too, wonder if all these antibiotics they have pumped into him has kept his body from healing? We are gluten free and he takes vitamin d3, children’s multivitamin and iron. I’m sending you some good vibes/prayers your way. We are going for a 2nd opinion(finally). I wish you the best!

      • pam December 25, 2015 at 8:42 pm #

        Hello. I read your story. Hope your sons doing well now. Please contact me I need to speak to people like you who have gone through similar experience. My daughter is was 9 when she was diagnosed with UC. Started off with C.diff but after colons copy the discover it and UC I need help. Pamkaila@yahoo.com or plus call 6477407645

      • pam December 25, 2015 at 8:45 pm #

        Terri please Call me

        • Terri December 27, 2015 at 1:49 pm #

          I sent you a email. Hope she is feeling better

  6. Ama January 6, 2012 at 8:54 am #

    Studies have shown that Saccharomyces boulardii (a beneficial yeast) inhibits the effects of Clostridium difficile toxins in human colonic mucosa. It also fights Candida infections. You can find it in Garden of Life’s “Primal Defense” (which includes other strains of good bacteria) and Thorne Reseach has a product called “Sacro-B” (which contains just the S. boulardii).

    This battle is against the bad bugs that depress the immune system and slowly break down the body’s defenses. Pharmaceutical drugs may help to an extent, but they are unnatural to the human body and usually cause more harm than good. Antibiotics are one of the main causes of intestinal disorders and should never be used except in severe life-threatening situations.

    Probiotics are #1 in treating gastrointestinal dis-eases. Stress reduction, adequate sleep, liquid vitamin supplimentation, lots of water and exercise (preferably outdoors,in the sun) is crucial and will build up the immune system to fight the infection. The Specific Carbohydrate Diet is a healthy diet and it works!, but it must be balanced (i.e. not having too much fruit, dairy, or too many nuts, etc.)

  7. Dick February 16, 2012 at 8:37 pm #

    Hi, guys & gals–I’m just now discovering this website and am very grateful to learn from the experiences of you all. My experience is this: I was prescribed a broad-spectrum antibiotic (amoxycillin) for a sinus infection in early 2010. Within a couple weeks, I came down with SEVERE diarrhea and cramping; subsequent stool tests showed positive for C. diff. A two-week course of Flagyl/metronidazole seemed to take care of it, but within a couple days of discontinuing that antibiotic, I was back to the severe stuff. After that, I was put on a several month course of vancomycin (Vancocyn), which did a good job of controlling symptoms until I got to 2 or 3X weekly–after that, I always relapsed (this happened on three separate occasions spread over several months). Strangely enough, after the first time or two, my subsequent stool tests showed negative for C. diff. After going down that road three times, my local gastro doc and I agreed it was time for a second opinion. I went to the Mayo Clinic where they did numerous tests (all the stool, blood etc. tests), lower sigmoidoscopy, upper endoscopy, and CAT scan. The final verdict–no C. diff, NOT Crohn’s (yay!), but moderate UC (boo!). We’re still trying to figure out the best course of action. I would agree with Ama that antibiotics can be the root cause of such things–my advice would be to NEVER take broad-spectrum antibiotics unless it’s REALLY, REALLY necessary–e.g. your life or overall health depends upon it! However, I have to say that my experience with probiotics (S. boulardii/Florastor) has been not that good. I can’t say that it has had either a positive or negative effect on my situation–I just didn’t respond to it very well, either for better or worse. More and more, I’m coming to the conclusion that UC is a spectrum of conditions–there seems to be a LOT of different causes, triggers, and treatments for this thing, and I don’t think that any two individuals will have the same experience. Exercise, stress reduction, etc. will undoubtedly help on many fronts, but I’d also strongly recommend a detailed daily diary of what you eat, drink, etc. to help you track what triggers your particular condition. Just like most things in life, you can let the situation go where it will, or you can choose to control the things you can and roll with the rest of the punches. I’m no pollyanna–I know that this can be a god-awful thing to deal with, but doing something–anything–can at least give you some encouragement to keep going, and in the end, maybe that’s what matters most.

    So, enough of my preaching. If there’s anybody else out there who has the C. diff-UC connection, I’d be really interested in your perspective. Take care, and stay strong.

    Cheers,

    Dick

  8. Tiffany February 23, 2012 at 5:36 pm #

    Hi guys, I was so glad to find this website, and especially this post! I have a similar story, and it’s so nice to feel like I’m not alone. I would appreciate any advice, feedback, thoughts, anything!

    Three years ago (December 2009) I was in my senior year of college and home for Christmas. I felt crummy most of the break, and the day I was supposed to fly back to school I passed out. We went to the doctor and they ran some blood tests. My white blood count was at 24, and they had no idea why. No fever, all blood tests were negative (mono, leukemia, you name it!). They pumped me full of a ton of antibiotics, and sent me back to college. Within a month I got a cough that wouldn’t go away, and got put on more antibiotics for walking pneumonia. All of these antibiotics got my white blood count to normal and rid of the pneumonia, but gave me c. diff.

    Fast forward 5 months, I was graduated, had moved to a new city, and got my first job as a teacher (7th grade math). I started having bloody stools but being the “mind over matter, suck it up” person that I am, I spent a month just ignoring it. It wasn’t until I was up to over 20 bloody bowel movements a day that I broke down and went to the hospital. They assumed it was c. diff. again, so gave me more antibiotics – it took us two months of negative c. diff tests, lots of bleeding, some ER trips, and finally a colonoscopy to diagnose me with moderate/severe ulcerative colitis (this was now November 2010). I was given prednisone, along with imuran and mesalamine.

    I spent several months on prednisone. In the middle of it, I was hospitalized with salmonella (May 2011, so 6 months of UC and prednisone). I finally weaned off the prednisone in June 2011, but have stayed on the mesalamine and imuran. About once a month my stools get loose, so my doctor has prescribed me a mesalamine enema to use and that usually clears it up within a few days.

    I got married a in December 2011 (so just two months ago). Last month I started bleeding again, but it took me back up to 20 bloody bowel movements a day before I realized the enema wasn’t working. I ended up in the ER and was hospitalized for a few days. The c. diff was positive, so my husband had to wear a gown, gloves, and mask to visit me (great way to start a marriage, huh?). They let me go home, telling me it was really rare this would affect my colitis in any way and the c. diff tests were now negative. That lasted two days, and I had to go back to the ER and was hospitalized for a few more days, this time for the colitis. They said it was rare the c. diff. would affect colitis, but apparently for me it did.

    I’ve been home for only two weeks. I tried going back to work one day and was completely wiped out. Plus I’ve had the worst headaches and vertigo every! Does this happen to anyone? I’m getting the normal leg/arm cramping, insomnia, mood swings, and food cravings. I saw my PCP and he said the headaches/vertigo are actually migraines and has scheduled an MRI just in case, but has given me migraine medication. Does anyone else have these effects? I feel like I’m going crazy. I want to get up, teach, do things, but I can’t and I’m now worried that I’ll pass out in front of my kids or something. How long is a normal recovery time? Before all of this, I’d never been sick a day in my life! (Seriously, I even got an award in high school for perfect attendance all four years.) I don’t want to push myself too hard like I usually do, but I’m terrified I’ll swing in the other direction and become lazy.

  9. Toby March 14, 2012 at 10:57 pm #

    I’ve had UC for 10 years (since I was 16) and earlier today I was told that I have C. Dif. I’m trying to understand the relationship between the two- there seems to be very little information on the topic. I refuse to believe that it’s just coincidental. I must say I am shocked at the diagnosis because to me it feels exactly like a bad UC flare. I can’t remember the last time I took antibiotics, I haven’t been hospitalized in 10 years, and (against my doctor’s advice) I haven’t been on imuran or other immuno-suppressents for about 2 years. AND I take priobiotics every single day (and have for many years) and eat yogurt often. I have no idea why or how I got C. dif and I don’t like it. One form of colitis is bad enough.
    In response to Tiffany: I’ve been getting bad migraines for the past two years but I haven’t heard of any correlation between the two except in how they both relate to stress and anxiety. Stress causes UC flares and migraines. In a way they are both forms of flares. The way migraines and UC flares can occur out of nowhere and ruin all your plans causes anxiety. The anxiety causes stress and it becomes a vicious cycle.

    • pam December 25, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

      Hi Toby I read your story . My daughter is also suffering from c .diff. and now UC. I need information that I’m not getting from resources out there

  10. Sammi March 16, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

    I was diagnosed with severe UC almost two years ago after I had mono for 5 months…it sucked! My GI doctor put me on every medicine he could only for me to be allergic to every single one of them and then to develop Pancreatitis on top of it. Finally my GI had me start going in for Remicade infusions…after my first infusion I ended up in the ER the next day hooked up to an EKG…and barely breathing. Just about to start Humira next week but yesterday I was at work in horrible amounts of pain…then I thought the worst had happened…I ran to the bathroom only to find that I hadn’t had an accident but that I had bleed through my underwear and pants. Went to the ER and found out I had C Diff. My doctors figured I picked it up at the hospital visiting my Mom who was just diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer. But I keep telling myself at least I got C Diff spending it with my Mom :)

  11. sandra Hansen April 22, 2012 at 7:46 pm #

    Tiffany, and the person who started this thread. How are you both now feeling as a few months have passed?

    I had c.diff and was on flagyl for 24 days. It’s a week after my antibiotics stopped, but my medium staged Ulcerative colitis is still terribly active. From what I’ve been reading it seems like it may take a while to get u.c under control, as people without u.c. seem to take long to recover as well.

    It’s so difficult to know if it’s a relapse, or flare due to the antibiotics! Your stories here are inspiring, and they motivate me to keep going and not give up. I’ve been taking Saccramyces Boull. twice a day, and one Primal defense probiotic a day, 6000 vitamin d, and 2 multivitamins a day per my Internist advice. I’ve also put myself on a yeast free ( or at least very low) diet, and now since I have lots of blood and mucus, going to switch to baby food, and broths for a few days. Hopefully my next humira shot will help if it is truely a colitis flare. However, does this all seem pretty typical of the course of healing? At times I feel like I wish I could just be in the hospital with a bag on me for liquids and food, and a plastic bag taped to my butt…

    I am interested in knowing everyone’s updates as i continue on with my battles also.
    Thank you!!
    sandra Hansen

  12. Ross McCabe July 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm #

    I have a slightly different experience from a lot of people who I see commenting – I seem to have developed c. diff and UC at the same time, supposedly independently of one another. I’m a 16 year old boy, and I was reasonably healthy until this spring. I was assigned clindamycin for wisdom tooth surgery, and developed bloody diarrhea. I was tested repeatedly for c. diff, and came up negative repeatedly. After two weeks, I was so weakened that I had to be admitted to the hospital. I was scoped, and even the appearance of my colon was consistent with c. diff – but the tests still came up negative. I dropped 30 pounds in under a month, which left me at 6’1 and 120 pounds – not good at all. I was diagnosed with UC because of crypt abscesses discovered in my intestines, and was swiftly put on 40 mg prednisone and Remicade. I initially seemed to react well to these, and got out of the hospital after 15 days in. However, a month out of the hospital, I began to deteriorate again. I was scoped a second time 5 days ago, and the appearance of my colon was still consistent with c. diff, and this time the biopsies also showed the presence of c. diff, raising the question of whether it’s been there all along. I’ve been on flagyl for 4 days now, and I’m hopeful it’s working. In the month and a half since I’ve been out of the hospital, I’ve tried a number of different dietary things, including going off wheat and milk – they didn’t seem to help a bit. I hope you get better soon – I’ve had that kind of day during this, when I’m so sick I can hardly move – I find for me it’s usually a result of dehydration, and I improve rapidly when hooked up to a saline IV.

  13. joanna February 12, 2013 at 5:23 pm #

    i was just at the hospital for 6 days for c diff. i am being treated with vancomycin and am praying to all of the universe that it does not come back. they started me off on flagyl which didn’t do anything at all. the vancomycin is really helping a lot and i’m terrified to get off of it.

    i started noticing weird gut symptoms as soon as i started humira about 3 weeks ago. i was getting horrendous bloating and abdominal distention where my belly was usually flat all the time. i then started getting fevers and bm’s started going up a lot. the doctors in the hospital thought it was just my uc flaring but i was adament that it was something else. i knew i was right when they said i had c diff. this just felt/feels so different than my uc flares. my doctors said it was definitely the humira that caused it so i’ve since stopped it.

  14. mary May 1, 2014 at 9:47 pm #

    I went to the er at the end of Feb with pains that I thought was my appendix. They put me in the hospital after a catscan showed I had a mass around my colon. They gave me antibiotics and three days later I was in isolation with C-diff. I wish I were dead. The constant mess was too much. After 8 days I was sent home and still had the problem for 4 days. Now it is May and guess what? I have c-diff again. I have a grandson’s first communion but can’t go, granddaughter’s graduation can’t go. I have to wear depends for fear of an accident

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