Intense Abdominal Pain – Jerry’s Colitis Story


My name is Jerry. I have battled UC for 18 years. I am 30 years old and born and raised in Indiana.
I am otherwise a very active happy person. I consider myself normal, but have found that controlling this disease is anything but normal..

Colitis Symptoms:

Intense abdominal pain. Urgent bowel movements. Bloody stools. Arm and leg pain. Bloating. Bowel movements upwards of 10 – 15 visits daily. Anxiety, panic.

I am new to this website as I just discovered it a week ago.

All I keep thinking is “wow, wish I would have stumbled upon this years ago.”
I have been in a constant battle with Ulcerative Colitis for 18 years now. I was diagnosed when I was 12 years old. To start off there really wasn’t a lot of research or information available at that time. Not to mention when you are at the cusp of becoming a teenager there is enough weird stuff going on in your body. What made matters worse is I hadn’t ever found anyone else who was suffering from this disease so I felt like the only one! I have had about 5 flare ups since being diagnosed. Each lasting a long time and requiring a hospital visit. The main problem has been my stubbornness or unwillingness to admit defeat.

I know that sounds dumb,

but I have always went to war

with my condition

and seemingly always lost.

The ensuing battles have left me in bad shape. I am currently in another flare up as we speak. My biggest problem is the medications. Steroids work but make me feel weird. I have been taking Sulphasalazine for over 10 years off and on and believe it has worn off its effectiveness. The horrible stomach cramps and uncontrollable bloody bowel movements are sometimes upwards of 15 times a day. I have read a lot on this site that confirms what I have always know yet doctors don’t seem to understand is the direct relationship between stress and the onset of a flare up. It’s a major factor with me if not the trigger.

I just wanted to get this out, I would like some feedback as I have never vented about my situation or discussed it.
Writing it down seemed liberating in a sense.

Colitis Medications:


I have only taken sulpha for control and taking 4 pills a day. Causes discolored urine and weird skin problems when exposed to sun. Overall seemed to help, but recently not so much.
Steroids control the bleeding and the flare but have made me feel worse, both mentally and physically.

written by Jerry

submitted in the Colitis Venting Area


5 thoughts on “Intense Abdominal Pain – Jerry’s Colitis Story”

  1. Hey, Jerry, I know that the doctors say stress has nothing to do with it, but then…how come normal people say “boy this stress is going to give me an ulcer?” They have no idea what they’re talking about, but it’s true. I get incredible stomach pains almost every day, and unfortunately most of that is due to stress. I am generally a loving, caring Christian man, but being a single day, working a full time job, and having hardly any money lets the stress add up. I think it “does” have a direct relationship. I am pretty fortunate that I don’t have multiple bowel movements every day-maybe 3, which is actually what the normal person is supposed to get. I’ve actually “gained” weight since being diagnosed back in 2007. I can’t exercise, because when I do, I get sick. I get really bad stomach cramps. I don’t have any war stories like most people do, but I just wanted to agree with you that yes, stress is a big reason for flare ups.

  2. I feel you 100 percent. I’m 33 and was diagnosed 9 yrs ago. I’ve been off and on with Asacol,3 rounds of Pred. And I’m on month 3 of 6mp. I think similar to you. I still think that I can defeat this disease. But with each flare up getting gradually worse I feel defeated! And when I’m not in a flare I seem to feel like I’m in denial because I feel human again. Or should I say “normal”. I agree that stress seems to bring on these flare ups. And it seems like the doctors just want to prescribe you meds. I try my best to treat my condition with Holostic natural methods. But it only seems like it gets me so far. I’ve been in remission for 2 months now and I feel like I have so much power and control. But in reality it’s the meds that are keeping me this way. My hair is falling out, my skin is ultra sensitive, and my face is as dry as a desert. But today I feel good. I take each day as it comes and hope that I stay in remission for longer than a year this time. I feel your pain. But know that one day you will get into a remission. I try to be as positive as I can with the disease and just pray that I don’t have to resort to having my colon removed. It may be time for you to get on stronger meds since the Sulfa isn’t working anymore. Whatever it takes to get back into remission. Keep your head up and stay positive. What doesn’t kill us just makes us stronger!

  3. Your story sounds very similar to mine.Although my colitis started when i was 32,now i am 54 now battling this for 22 years. Even i have had a few flares say , each one a little worse than the previous one. Proctal, sigmoid, left side,and now pan colitis.I too take sulfasalazamine every day.1000mg twice daily even when i am not in a flare. It works best as the maintenance medicine.My last flare in 2009 was the worst when i started imuran,but had to stop it soon as there was bone marrow toxicity. I then added a probiotic. boswellia. slippery elm, and folic acid as supplements and have been in remmission since then.I think you must take folic acid when you take sulfasalazine.And lastly stress and flares are directly related no matter what anyone says and i think its more about emotional stress.

    Surgery is always there in our minds, specially when we are in a bad flare, been in that situation many times but the flare eventually goes into remission and things are normal again .Predisone during a flare is normal, sooner we get off it the better.Maintaining the remmission carefully is the ideal thing.

  4. Jerry,
    I can relate to you.I have been diagnosed with IBS for 21 yrs.I have also been diagnosed with pancreas malabsorption syndrome.As of 2 yrs ago a doctor said I have U/C with ecoli.I have bloody diarreah,food comes out whole like I never chewed it.I can’t leave my home without taking immodium.

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