First I am sorry about the diagnosis' on both your parts. Neither disease is pleasant. There is a very strong connection regarding Crohns and RA. You'll see that many people at the GI's office have Crohns and Crohns related arthritis plus perhaps RA. And at the rheumatologist's there will be many peole who have RA and Crohns! Once an autoimmune disease is present, there poses a risk to develop another.
I started showing signs of RA at age 15 , 16. I always had abdominal pain, as early as 10 and 11 years old.
Diagnosed with the RA officially in 1997...but not treated for it until 2002. Docs in my hospitals said it would most likely be genetic and i would develop it later in life. Sadly it plummeted out of control. Aggressive treatment for RA just started to take place in middle 2004.
Bloody BMs and diarrhea I attributed to all the pills I was on....until I dropped 25 pounds off of a 110 body! So that scared me enough to seek a GI and colonoscopy:BINGO! a nasty Crohns on top of RA. And all my docs say there is a strong correlation of both.
My father's side has RA cases as does my mom's too. My mother's side has the colitis and crohns problems as well as colon CA. Genetic tendencies may play a part...the risk is there at least.
But do NOT blame yourself or feel guilty. Be aggressive and persistant and vigilant of progress of symptoms. Early treatment is BEST for RA and for Crohns...it can pave the way of an entire life and decrease the risk of disibility and complications.
Good thoughts and prayers are with you always.
Active, Severe RA. Crohns Disease. Chiari Malformation & Right Brain venous anomoly. AS. Emphysema. Rheumatic Lung. MVP and Tricuspid prolapse. Had Lymes disease for 10 years.
Meds: Humira 40mg every 4 days; pred; Pentasa; Imuran; dilaudid; diazepam; Avinza 30mg; MiraLax & too many others.