Does Your Colitis Affect Your Ability to Perform Your Job?

87 Participants from the UC Work Survey added individual comments to this question:

  • Especially when it is month end the 5 minutes break to bath its real a waste of time
  • It does when symptoms get very bad. Everything feels like an effort–more so than someone without a debilitating disease.
  • I have had bad and good days. It is imperative that you find a boss who can relate to your situation.
  • In some ways yes, I cant concentrate if i am in pain and its awkward having to sit in the same position for hours on end
  • I do technical support and have to be on the phone all day. It is hard because sometimes I’ve had to run to the bathroom & just have the customer hold on a minute.
  • Only once
  • I’m tired all the time so I cannot concentrate with women screeching all day.Twice I’ve had to take time off because of having up to 25 BM’s per day.
  • I get tired faster than my colleagues. So, after the days with lots of stress, after working 10 hour for more than 2 days in a row, I just get a day off and recover.
  • It has during flare ups
  • I would say yes and no. I don’t think I would be able to do more hours (I do 22.50 hours a week).
  • some days I am so tired and or feeling so unwell I may take a day of and there are days I try not to to take a day off so I found it hard to function well in my job or if I am in a middle of a job and I have to run to the loo I have to make an excuse to my client that I have to get something to finish the job.
  • I’m a teacher. There have been times I HAD to ask the teacher across the hall to watch my students. Talk about humiliating.
  • I’ve had to ask a co-worker to share in my responsibilities due to needing a bathroom nearby at a moment’s notice.
  • Sometimes…. Especially when I have a major flare. I am a RN who manages clinical research studies so for the most part, people are understanding given the industry I am in. However, there are times when I must run out of a meeting when I get the urge.
  • Sometimes I feel like it does.
  • I work on the phone and one of the requirements is to be available for calls 90 percent of the day. During a flare up it is tough to stay at the desk.
  • Sometimes. When I have a flare I can not work.
  • I am interupted by it at times, but it does not affect it directly.
  • When I am sick & running to the bathroom, I’m obviously focusing on that rather than my work. When I get stressed out, my UC is worse, along with my patience – I get very tired & snappy & get headaches. I try to meditate, relax & sleep more (unless I’m up at nights!) to compensate for the UC flare.I rarely call in sick to work, I just put up with it at work. I tend to use the disabled toilets so I get my own space at least. :)
  • Not yet
  • sometimes during a flare up I will work from home so I can be more comfortable.
  • Im very energetic naturally and even more so since my operations. If im feeling tired I’ll go to bed early the night before or make sure I eat lots. Sometimes I have flare ups too but just have lots of loperamide and mesalazine and get on with it! I think my competitiveness helps me refuse to let it be a problem.
  • Sometimes- I work in the field from time to time and it can be difficult when you feel the need to go and the facilities are no where in site.
  • Not much but it has made required travel less comfortable, especially when having a bad day.
  • It will do if i am sick during school term.I have worked in the same school for 17 years,so i would hope they would be understanding.
  • Can’t get the work done in the time alloted.
  • When I don’t feel well.
  • it impacts due to the increase of the amount of sick leave I take. Also when I was on 60mg of prednisolone the side effects were difficult to manage with the work load and the two departments I manage.I also struggle with use of the key board as I suffer much joint pain in my fingers.
  • When going through a flare I still try to attend work and act normally therefore impacting my performance at work
  • When I am going through a bad time with UC I can’t concentrate on anything and shut myself off from people.
  • It definitely makes it more difficult but I have learned to work around it and get the job done. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
  • yes as I may have to run to the loo and I am in a customer facing role
  • Hard to watch over and take care of kids when UC is acting up. Also, I can’t just call into work, I usually just suffer through it or when it’s really bad, have my husband come home early.
  • While working as a mid level manager for a large corporation, I missed large segments or total meetings concerning my project, had to stay home on severe UC days. Not much continuity or sense of accomplishment on severe days or when I am in a flare up.
  • It depends on the day and how bad the flare is. Sometimes you don’t want to get out of bed- and those days are the worst. Especially when you’re supposed to be happy and smiling all day for the kids. I truck through it- but it’s never easy, and completely exhausting.
  • My coworkers are very supportive and will take over my duties while I go to the bathroom .
  • Only in a flare. I am a teacher and the bathroom is 3 halls away. I keep extra clothes at school.
  • It can do but i have things in place that if im in a flare and cant go out, my boss just gets someone else to do it and leaves me to do othe work in the house.
  • With being constantly exhausted, in pain, frequent toilet trips and now mild osteoporosis!
  • sometimes
  • Not quite as productive as I could be. I always feel like crap and always gotta make many mad dashes to the toilet…pretty embarrassing.
  • Sometimes yes and sometimes no. So when I answer yes I mean yes because it’s more often than no.
  • I end up working extra hours to make up for the lack of productivity.
  • Ongoing fear that “the urgency” will take hold
  • sometimes
  • mainly because of fatigue, occasional fever, mood-problems, arthritis and traveling issues
  • Fortunately, I can get to toilet if I need to.
  • at times when im having a bad flare its hard to do my job 100%
  • I’m in grad school. There have been a few times when I’ve needed to run out of class to the bathroom.
  • I have a corporate job. I used to work in an office setting and have since switched to another company that lets me work from home. I don’t believe colitis impacts my performance, but it may impact my availability to others.
  • Had to take a week off due to a colitis flare in 2 of my last 3 jobs – I used sick time or vacation if sick time was unavailable. Being on a special diet affects social interactions at work. I feel awkward about bringing my own food, not eating at “potluck” type meals, etc. People have been generally very understanding, though.
  • On occasion. It can take its toll on my ability to focus. Plus, I’m in PR and it has its challenges when I’m supposed to be in long meetings, events, or just being “on” at the appropriate moments.
  • Sometimes it can make work almost impossible.
  • No not really. I have only taken a day off from work twice since I started working here 5 years ago. All the other times were a couple of hours for doctor appointments for check ups.
  • I am not as confident as i used to be. I often feel mentally distracted and worried about when the next bathroom run is going to be needed.
  • Only when I have a bad flare-up. Thank God, not very often.
  • Not yet anyway….I am always worried it may
  • Sometimes I’m very weak or run to the bathroom a lot. I usually let my co-workers know that I’m not feeing well.
  • When I have a flare, i have to spend more time away from desk to be in the bathroom.
  • I move around and I cannot just leave my place to go to the restroom. I have to ask to go to the restroom and mostly it makes a long time for leads to come out
  • When I am having a bad flare, I am usually exhausted by the afternoon. This makes completing my work very difficult.
  • When not going through a flare up it doesn’t, but u are always aware of it and u try no to get stressed about work or work too hard.. It’s very hard however if going through flare, I was struggling with a flare for two months and working.. It was so hard. I should have taken time off ..
  • There have been times when I have not been able to work at all – couldn’t focus and was in too much pain.
  • I worry about going from one site to the other. Some days I also have to stay home from work as I have been to the toilett more than 10 times during the night and I’m to tired to perform.
  • Yes I had to abandon career and get a job close to home
  • Sometimes. AM’s can be difficult getting to office on time
  • Although I had to run to the bathroom a lot, it did not affect my career. The stress of my job absolutely had an effect on my health/UC.
  • Only when a flare gets really bad.
  • While I don’t think it actually has affected my quality of work, during flares when I am constantly making bathroom trips I would definitely say that the interruptions affect my ability to get things done.
  • I teach. During a flare I have to run outt of the room.
  • Currently yes as I am recovering from surgery, but in general unless I was having a high level of pain then I could continue with work, just more visits to the loo.
  • When I have flares that prevent me from going to work.
  • I travel from retailer to retailer and in the middle of a flare it is very difficult because I never know when I will need a bathroom.
  • Sometimes I am unable to work a full day as I am so physically and mentally exhausted during flare ups but 90% of the time I manage ok.
  • If I am having a flare uc affects my job performance as my job is very labor intensive
  • yes….
  • Sometimes – don’t always focus as well when i’m having a bad tummy day.
  • Only when I was really ill and then was hospitalist
  • Yes and no just depends how bad a flare up is.
  • I’m a nurse and sometimes I’ve had to run out of my patient’s room to run to the bathroom. Or I’ve been sitting in a bathroom and doctors have been looking all over for me, wanting to go do something for the patient.
  • When I’m feeling good, it’s no problem, but when I have a flare the restroom is a long walk away. Also, when I’m flaring my brain feels muddled and I’m extremely tired all the time. I’m sure that affects my work.
  • I am in remission now, but I was out for about 6 weeks going through my first flare. So just curious about what the future holds and when I will flare next.
  • Sometimes i guess it does. I often get asked to go places off site, and i make up excuses as to why i shouldn’t.
  • Too many trips to the bathroom
  • This hasn’t come up yet, but my job might occasionally require travel to locations that are not bathroom friendly.
  • When I am having a flare up.
  • sometimes when I am in a really painful place and of course running to the bathroom every 10 min does not help

Main UC and Work Survey Page – click here…




Ulcerative Colitis Tips


The FREE iHaveUC eBook "Ulcerative Colitis Tips" is made available to all members of the 15,000 person newsletter group INSTANTLY. It is several pages of tips gathered from other people living with Ulcerative Colitis, and has ideas which can be put into action immediately. You will need to enter your email, and confirm the email address afterwards.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply