Changing of Seasons and Colitis Flare Ups – RELATED?

I was reading through some of the recent PUBMed scientific studies the past two days, and I found one which caught my eye.

For years now, there’s has been a running theme that there very well may be something to the idea that the changing of the seasons plays a part in UC flare ups starting up.

I myself have sometimes had a harder time getting through the months of October/November, and I know many others who have expressed their “bad months” as well.

So, let’s give it up to the good fellows out in Japan who have put together a pretty interesting study in some pretty simple English for all of us to read.

The title of the study is: “Seasonal Variations in the Onset of Colitis in Japan”

The study was published in the World Journal of Gastroenterology in December and you can read it in it’s entirety here:

Also, Dr. Shigeo Koido, MD, Division of Gastroenterology, Jikei University School of Medicine has been so kind to leave us an email address for contact details:

What do you think?

Do you think your UC flare ups have some seasonality to them?


I found this pretty interesting from the study:

The highest onset rate was observed in October (24/198, 12.1%), followed by March (23/198, 11.6%). The lowest onset rate was observed in July and August (10/198, 5.1%).

If you’re interested in educating yourself more and you’d like to read the same PubMed Articles (there are new ones related to ulcerative colitis almost DAILY… Go ahead and read the post I wrote about how to use PubMed here:

Some other studies which were pretty interesting:

Biological therapy for dermatological manifestations of IBD…

Has the risk of colorectal cancer in IBD… (Something we all think about right)

Pre-diagnostic Clinical Presentations... (This study was interesting because like so many other UC’ers (not just children) it takes WAAAAAY too long for the diagnosis to actually come through.)

Go Seahawks (only cause they beat my Niners),

Adam Scheuer


7 thoughts on “Changing of Seasons and Colitis Flare Ups – RELATED?”

  1. We all wonder about this don’t we?

    Same old same old…we are all so very different in how UC presents, flares, relapses.

    I just wish a cure could be found ALREADY. It’s a crummy thing to have to live with every day of one’s life….

  2. This is a very interesting read. I’ve had both Ulcerative Colitis, and currently have Crohns, and in both cases, from about Canadian Thanksgiving (mid October) each year, my symptoms start to worsen, and that lasts until about the 2nd week into Spring.

  3. Interesting study. For the past 3-4 years I have noticed that my proctitis flares up around september/october as the weather starts to get colder. I have noticed that hot weather (like when i’ve gone on holiday to a hot country) definitley helps me to feel better. Too bad I live in UK where its always cold and rainy!!

  4. Thanks for posting this. I live in Japan and began having UC symptoms in June 2012 and was officially diagnosed / hospitalized in Oct. 2012. I was hospitalized again in late April/May 2013 with pancreatitis related to my UC (or poss. my UC meds.). Anyway, being a non-Japanese foreigner it’s interesting that both of my major flairs correspond closely to the “high onset” months said to affect the native Japanese population.

    Some fun facts about UC in Japan: In Japanese UC is called Kaiyouseidaichouen (潰瘍性大腸炎) which lit. translates into something like crushing, boiling, large intestinal inflammation. Most UCers here have monthly scheduled blood tests/consultations to monitor the effectiveness of their medications. Residents of Japan with UC (and other incurable / non self inflicted diseases) also receive free or greatly reduced medical care and prescription drugs. For example, my last 7 day hospital stay was free except for a 0.70 cent USD charge for the hospital gown I rented.

    1. Hey Mike,

      Thanks for all the info about UC in Japan. Fascinating. Sounds like they are doing alot right about patient care/insurance costs for people who find themselves in a situation that many UC’ers are in.

      Best to you and thanks for sharing again:)


  5. Thanks for this article Adam, keep them coming!

    I definitely notice flare ups from late October through March. I’m wondering if this is a Vitamin D thing? Luckily, living in Sunny Oakland, CA, I get my share of vitamin D, plus I take supplements. But I’m wondering with the Winter Sun, could it be that we produce less Vitamin D; therefore triggering flares during the colder months. Hmm….. more to research! :)

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