I’m 46 and I experienced all the typical symptoms back in 2005, had a colonoscopy and was told possible Crohn’s. I was given Asacol, and the symptoms went away immediately. I stopped taking the Asacol when the bottle was empty, and didn’t have another issue until last year. I was officially diagnosed with UC in March 2012. I was again given Asacol, and expected the symptoms to disappear…not this time.
Some more about Me:
I am an avid triathlete, and love to run. That’s how I first realized that the symptoms were returning, as I would leave for my morning run, and one day I had to return home immediately to use the toilet. Within 2 days I quit trying to run, and made an appointment with the doctor. I also have a wife and three year old son. I have nine acres that I play around with also. I live in the great state of Texas.
Current Colitis Symptoms:
2-3 BM per day. No blood, no D, no cramping.
Winners Never Quit
In February 2012, I had all the typical symptoms just show up over a 2 day period, after 8 years of no symptoms. I spent all my mornings in the bathroom, sometimes I would think it was over, only to rush right back in. Lots of blood, mucus, D, and a nauseous feeling constantly. I would have 10 or more BM every day, and hoped I was near a toilet when the time came or I was in trouble. I was tired all the time. I was given Asacol, and as before I expected all my symptoms to vanish quickly, and they did improve quickly at first, then grew worse over time. After a few months, I went back to the doctor, and he told me basically to get used to it. I was irritated by this and told him I wanted to try other drugs, and this wasn’t going to cut it. He changed my meds to Apriso, which is another delivery system for Mesalamine. I showed improvement for a couple weeks, then back to where I started.
I started running again, just to feel normal, but I was far from it. I had been running 45 miles a week when I got sick, and now I could barely do 10. Since my symptoms had never left, I was also having to stop a couple times during the runs to keep from crapping myself. Luckily I live in a rural area, and had plenty of trees and bushes to hide behind! Every now and then I would have some good days, and would think its getting better, but it was never to be. I worked my way back to 40 miles running a week, and decided to live with the pit stops, as I wasn’t going to let Ulcerative Colitis run my life. I set a goal, and signed up for a local half marathon.
Work was another story, as most mornings were spent on the toilet, feeling like I was dying. I manage a large area in my job, and always worried about getting from point A to point B without an incident. Unfortunately, there were some issues, but luckily never in public.
In December I had a month and a half until the race, and no relief of the symptoms, so I decided to go back to the doctor to try Prednisone. Then I found this site…and decided to try natural methods. I felt that most drugs only work for people for only so long, and wanted to keep that option open for when I really needed them.
I read Graham’s post about EVOO and read Bev talking about probiotics and glutamine. I went out and bought all of this on December 1 2012. I will always remember the date.
I take Extra Virgin Olive Oil, L glutamine, and flax oil (omega 3) twice a day. I take a 40 billion probiotic, co Q-10 and a multivitamin every morning. I started them all at the same time, as I was desperate to feel better, and I started to improve in about 2 weeks. There were a couple bad days in there, but I kept up the regimen. After a month, I felt 90% normal. Now after 2 months I feel 97%. I went from blood, D, and 10+ BM per day to 2-3 now, with no “emergencies”. I still take Apriso, though I have never thought that it did much, but not willing to mess with the good results right now. In no way do I think this regimen will work for everyone. I consider myself lucky for the last 2 months it has given me relief.
Best of all, I can run again. I did the unthinkable (for me) and ran the 13.1 miles without stopping for the bathroom, and was in the top 10% of my age group. Today I did a 10 k race and won my age group (small race). I’m not trying to brag, but to let others know it is possible to perform well despite this disease. During the dark times, I scoured forums looking for success stories, just to keep me going. I hope this can encourage someone else to push through the bad times. I know my remission (not sure I really know what that is) has been for only a short period of time, but I hope to have more good times than bad in the future.
Lastly, I want to thank those that have posted on this board, as I learned so much more here about living with this disease than from my doctor…
written by Ken
submitted in the colitis venting area
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