Ulcerative Colitis Tips


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Lara’s Update — Good News :)

Background:

I was diagnosed with severe UC one year ago. My life has altered since that. I’m still in graduate school and am due to graduate in May of 2013.

Current Symptoms:

1-3 BM per day

I get Remicade infusions every 8 weeks & there’s always 1 day out of that time period when I’ll go 5-6 times. Then I go back to my “normal.”

Lara on a cruise

on a cruise ship

My Story:

First off, I was able to get an internship at a nursing home. I love working with the people there, but the work itself could be really frustrating at times. But then, aren’t all internships supposed to be somewhat rotten?

I went to see my GI doctor for a check up. I knew that it would be time to schedule my colonoscopy, so I was prepared for that when I arrived. He asked how I was doing & by this point I was going to the bathroom about 5 times daily (all solid). I told him that as soon as I went for Remicade, literally the next day, I dropped back down to my “normal.” I asked him if that could be stress-related, and he thought that there was more to it than just stress. So I scheduled my endoscopy for ten days after my 27th birthday. What a gift to myself!!

I celebrated my birthday with my friends, family, and boyfriend’s family. I’m so amazed and thankful that everyone has become so incredibly understanding as to what I can and can’t eat. I ended up with three parties & 2 birthday dinners. So, all in all it was a great weekend.

My Colonoscopy:

My doctor wanted me to start a clear liquid diet the day before the procedure. Since I couldn’t really compare anything to my last one, because I was in the hospital, I decided to do that for 2 days. Needless to say, I was hungry & really cranky. It didn’t help that Aunt Flow decided to come early, which was just awesome!! :/ There’s nothing like prepping for a colonoscopy during that time of the month.

Lara with her friend at a wedding

I was given Suprep, which has got to be the most vile thing on the planet. It was kind of like drinking grape flavored axel grease. My friend called to offer support & told me to think of it like a cocktail. Yeah right!! Like that would work. I’ll never think of grape the same way again. But, I was able to get down most of the first dose the evening before, until I started to throw it up & I quit. I got up extra early that morning to try to get down the second dose. I was able to get down almost all of that.

So anyway, the big day arrives. I knew I needed to be cleaned out, but I didn’t know what that should look like. Again, I was in the hospital for my last one & all I saw was blood. So I did an internet search & discovered I was supposed to be producing some sort of yellow thing. Good. That’s what I had.

I wasn’t nervous at all. I was just totally ready for the thing to be over with so I could get some food. My mom drove me to the Endoscopy center & I was taken to the back. My nurse was so sweet. She put on Journey on Pandora for me while I was waiting on the doctor. Then the CRNA came to deliver the “magic juice” to put me to sleep & I woke up about 20 minutes later.

Turns out that there was some SERIOUS healing over the past year. Yay!! What good news!! My doctor found a bunch of pseudopolyps all throughout my colon, which he said was to be expected & it was nothing to worry about. And it turns out that only the lower part of my colon is now the part that is still really affected (it was my entire colon last year). He said that if I should go into a flare, we’d be able to treat that spot locally with some enemas. Oh joy!! LOL

Endymion Extravaganza

Lara with a friend at the Endymion Extravaganza

There was still some inflammation, so I’m to continue on my medications. However, he did feel like he could remove the Nexium from my list. I’m soooooooooo glad to be off at least one!!! That was my goal for this point.

So all in all, my summer has been super busy & really productive. I ended up with all A’s this semester & may end up with a job offer. I know I was the only person to apply for this one administrative position & will be interviewing on Friday. Wish me luck! The one thing I’m concerned about is, how do I bring up the fact that I get Remicade infusions? I feel like they ought to know. They kind of do now, but I want everything to be out in the open to begin with. Any suggestions?

Where I’d like to be in 1 year:

Well I just got off one of my medications, which was my goal. So I guess my new goal is continued healing.

Colitis Medications:

Remicade
Apriso
Multi-Vitamins

written by Lara

submitted in the colitis venting area




7 Responses to Lara’s Update — Good News :)

  1. Adam
    Adam July 28, 2012 at 11:54 am #

    YAY Lara,

    So so cool. So happy for you too.

    I hope that everybody else who is reading your story and who is currently in an awful way with active UC symptoms can see that it is FOR SURE possible to turn the corner and get things under control. And by the looks of your recent pictures, its pretty clear you’re still out there in the world having a great time!!! AWESOME, I love it!

    BEST of luck with the job interview, I hope it goes/went well! Let us know!!!!

    And as far as remicade infusions and bringing that up, I’m not sure how big/small the company is that you’re thinking about working for. But, if there is a Human resources person, you should most definitely be able to discuss that with him/her. And, if that’s not the case, or even if it is, I bet it wouldn’t be too difficult to tell your boss some of your colitis secrets too.

    I trully think that managers/bosses etc… definitely understand that all employees are not the same. Some of us have different needs/requirements, and that’s part of life and part of working with people.

    If you’re doing a great job as an employee, I really don’t think you have much to worry about.

    best of luck to you and your family Lara!!!!

    -Adam

  2. Justin
    Justin July 28, 2012 at 3:57 pm #

    Hey Lara! I’m glad to hear everything has gotten better for you! I am supposed to start my remicade in the next couple days and am really hoping it will help. Do you have any major side effects from the remicade?

  3. Lara
    Lara July 29, 2012 at 8:20 am #

    Justin: Thank you!

    Prior to the infusion I notice that I do start to get kind of fatigued. The only things that I notice after my infusions are that I get really tired, cold, & I’m SUPER hungry for about 2 days to follow.

    I really hope that Remicade is able to help you & that you feel better soon!! :)

  4. Bev July 29, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

    So freakin’ fabulous Lara!!

    Yipppeeee!!

  5. Lara
    Lara August 4, 2012 at 5:00 pm #

    I got the job!

    I made sure that during the interview that it was well known that I’ve got to take time off for me to go get my infusions & they were willing to work with me on that.

    • Adam
      Adam August 4, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

      Yeah Lara!!!

      Great job! Way cool!!!!

  6. Steve August 4, 2012 at 10:31 pm #

    Awesome Lara…glad to hear it. :)

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