I am a 21 year old male here in the States, finishing up my last semester here at college. now THIS. 4 weeks later: am I finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel?
My Colitis Experience (With Prednisone)
I have been healthy my entire life. But that all changed 4 weeks ago: Diarrhea.
Week 1. At first I thought “Okay, probably just your run of the mill diarrhea. could’ve been something i ate.” I went to the store and bought some generic over-the-counter stuff like loperamide and pepto-bismol but none of it worked. Unfortunately, the timing was not great – we were getting into final exams at this time. “I’ll just tough it out” I remembered saying.
By the end of week 1, my stools were getting really loose and there began to be signs of blood. But still, I decided not to go home to my doctor. I just didn’t have the time. I was going about 10 times a day, some more urgent than others. To counteract these unfriendly frequent bathroom runs, I began to eat less – that was the only thing I found that helped.
Finished all my exams. Week 3.
Now the diarrhea was getting even worse;
and I was not even eating anything!
I immediately went home to see my doctor and she put me on Cipro (antibiotics). I probably had infectious diarrhea, she said. I took the meds for 5 days and still nothing. I didn’t want to eat; and whatever I did came right out. Bloody stools all the time now. Sometimes i would feel like I HAVE to go, but I would just find myself straining on the bowel – nothing but a few drips of blood. I’ve lost 15 pounds by now.
NEW YEARS EVE. I went to the ER. I felt like I was going to pass out. I was really dehydrated. They examined me, gave me some saline and took some stool samples and sent me back on my merry way. They told me to come back in a week. !@ck them. Without a confirmed diagnosis, they said they couldn’t give me any medication. I was very frustrated; I didn’t want to be taking any more medications that wasn’t helping. Anyway, another painful week passed and the results came back: not a bacteria/virus infection.
Week 4: PAIN. I felt like my entire left side was burning, like there was a ball sandpaper in my intestines. I drove back to the ER. This time, the doctors did a CT scan and a Colonoscopy.
Diagnosis: severe-to-moderate Ulcerative Colitis
throughout my entire colon. Fantastic.
By now I was going about 30 times/day, all bloody stools, swollen rectum and still eating practically nothing.
This time, the doctors admitted me for a week and put me on a saline/glucose/morphine drip. That and a liquid diet.
I was discharged one week ago. I was prescribed Asacol (mesalamine) to take 3 times-a-day, 1200mg-per-time. I took it for about 4 days but saw no effect: nothing!!
I went back to the doctor two days ago for another consultation (my biopsy came back: still ulcerative colitis) and complained. Nothing was getting better! This time, they gave me Prednisone, at 40mg/day, and told me that it was a more aggressive form of treatment.
Prednisone, the God-Given-Cure?? (knock on wood)
Okay, I kid you not. The very day I took prednisone (yesterday), my runs to the bathroom stopped. STOPPED. I went from 27 times the day before to 3 times. The stools were still very loose and watery, but 3 times?!? Today, which is day two, I haven’t had to go yet!
Does Prednisone work this quickly?
Or has the asacal finally kicked in?
Moreover, perhaps what is most miraculous, my appetite came back! For the past two days i have developed an ENORMOUS appetite. I’ve been eating 3 regular meals with my family – I haven’t been able to eat for 4 weeks! Where is this food even going?!?!
Finally, I’d like to say a thanks to Adam for making this site. It is truly great to have an online home where there is such a wonderful group of people who understands, have gone / is going through what you are going through. I hope that things will turn for the better soon!
written by “College Student”
Submitted in the Colitis Venting Area
22 year old college student diagnosed with UC in January 2012. I am happy to have such a great group of friends and an understanding family; they have been so supportive and helpful. Thank you.