Hopeful – I’m 23 and was Just Diagnosed with Colitis

Hi, I’m a 23 year old female who was diagnosed with “mild” Ulcerative Colitis yesterday.

For 5 years i’ve been suffering from a medical condition no one could figure out. I had severe stomach cramping, nausea, weakness, and just bad bowel movements. First, they did a cat scan on my abdomen along with an ultrasound, and more blood tests than I can count. They found that I had gallstones, a high billirubin level, and my eyes were always yellow. Naturally, they thought the gallstones were the cause of my pain and high billirubin so finally I had my gall bladder removed. I didn’t notice as much of a difference in how I was feeling as I was expecting after talking to people who also had their gall bladder removed. So I tried adjusting my diet and sucking it up.

As time passed I became more and more of a recluse.

I couldn’t hold a job, commit to ANYTHING ahead of time, and developed pretty bad anxiety when I did have to leave the house in fear of getting sick away from home. Finally, my Doctor said I should see a gastroenterologist who then diagnosed me with Crigler Najjar Type II ( a very rare genetic condition that explained the high billirubin ) and put me on phenobarbital to control it no big deal. So now i’m a little less yellow, but still have the worse symptoms…extreme weakness and bad cramps that keet me housebound. So about 3 weeks ago I had a upper endoscopy and colonoscopy, which showed 2-3 mild red spots and diagnosed me with UC!! I’ve just started taking Asacol and in 2 days starting a steroid.

I’m feeling a little relief already even though I think it’s mostly in my mind because i’m so happy to have found a somewhat light at the end of the tunnel.

After losing 5 years in my prime this feels like a new lease on life for me.

I’ll definitely never take advantage of my health ever again!

Submitted by “Mirraj” in the Colitis Venting Area


2 thoughts on “Hopeful – I’m 23 and was Just Diagnosed with Colitis”

  1. Dear Mirraj, It does take a long time to get diagnosed! I was in the five year club for that (I have Crohn’s) and almost had an ovary removed (! glad they didn’t!) b/c they thought that was the problem…. Gallstones, kidney stones, you name it, I had it.

    Once you take control of your own health and advocate for yourself and learn, you will be better off–and you are on the right track! Keep it up and you have our support on this awesome site that Adam has created. Once things settle down, try to create a holistic environment for yourself, too: Yoga, exercise, sleep, eating healthy (SCD is a good place to learn!), etc. Good luck.

  2. Miiraj,

    You just described what happened to me a few years ago when i was diagnosed. Had to take year off of school, being sick all the time hurt my GPA and desire to attend classes(due to excessive flatulence, weight loss, etc.) Finally finished my degree in Civil Engineering, minors in math, computer science!

    Health is good, and haven’t had a bad flare up since that horrible one 3 years ago. In the process of looking for a job now. Hoping I don’t stress out too much with this bad economy and current events and relapse into a flare up.

    Just found out today that we(People with UC) can’t join the armed forces. Was talking to recruiters about enlisting as a Civil Engineering Officer, can’t join medically with UC…. Yay… So going to hit the job market and hopefully corporations won’t be prejudice to people with UC.

    Good luck!

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