How do I go back to work?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 4/9/2008 6:24 AM (GMT -6)   
I work part time now because of pain and severe D and not knowing when it would hit but I have always managed to make it to the toilet in time. I have always been afraid of an accident. Well today it happened. I was at my desk and thought hmm I think I need to go to the toilet, got up, walked towards the door, got about 6-7 feet and woosh it was all over (me anyway) sad

Thank God no one noticed and I managed to sneak out to a nearby toilet without being spotted but I was soooo embarrassed. I am terrified about going in to work tomorrow in case it happens again. I always take a couple of Immodium before I leave for work but even they don't seem to work anymore.

How do others cope with this fear? What do you do to avoid this happening and how do you cope if it does?
Diagnosed with Crohns May 2005, been sick for years prior - D and arthritis including AS. Also have severely scarring of my Oesophegus, Bacterial Overgrowth of Bowell and severe migraines.

Currently taking: 6MP; Pentasa; Cipro; Zoplicane; Venlafaxin; Somac; Metropolol; Immigran; Glucosamine; Folic Acid; Calcium; Calciferol; B12 injections; Multi Vitamins; Loperamide and Coedine, phew!

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 4/9/2008 7:53 AM (GMT -6)   

Fortunately in my 15 years it's never happend to me. The closest issue I had was I had a fistual (actually three together that erupted at almost the same location) and while I was at work one day, they exploded. Fortunately I was wearing black pants, but the smell was just horrendous. Itw as very embarrasing but I made it through. I've never had an accident though, so my words may sound hollow..
But unfortunately there's nothing you can do but go back. I wouldn't take something to stop you up. You could end up with a bowel obstruction and be in even more trouble, possibly requiring surgery if it gets too bad.
Considering this was your first after almost 3 years, I wouldn't expect that it would happen all that often. But, I would keep around a change of clothes. Besides the obvious purpose they serve, you can use them to hide the accident on the way to the restroom. You can do the same with your coat.
I know that's not much help, but I'm more along the lines of if it happens to me, it happens to me. And if people aren't understanding enough (and most aren't) then screw 'em. I don't have the time, inclination, nor desire to associate with people who want to pick on me because of something that's out of my control.
And don't worry, it's just like everything else..Reacting to it and coping with it will come with experience.
If someone else has any ideas of keeping accidents from happening without ending up with a bowel obstruction, please let me know...?

I do not believe the God that has empowered us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use. -- Bonus points if you can guess who said it.

Dx with CD in August of 1993. Resection in Jan of 96. Been on Pentasa, 6MP, Flagyl, azathioprine, Entocort, Furoxone, Hydrocotisone, Remicade, Prednisone, methylprednisolone, sulfasalazine, and probably others. Currently on Humaira.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2003
Total Posts : 1017
   Posted 4/9/2008 8:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I actually had it happen and had to ask for help. I had to get a change of clothes and it was really bad. You go back with your head high. You did nothing wrong it is part of what we deal with and even though part of you died you should not be ashamed. People respect us because of what we deal with on a daily basis. They don't need the nasty details to know it is a horrible way to live, but you would be surprised how much people would respect you if they knew that you had the strength to get up out of bed today and face the day no matter what is thrown at you.

I have people at work who have told me that it is because they know I will be at work that they make themselves get up when that is the last thing they want to do. One woman said - I wake up I feel bad then I think about you and say to mayself - if she can do it so can I. What everyone forgets is we actually do have a great purpose. We give others the inner strength to deal with their lives. It is why I am not shy about being sick. I don't share some of my horror stories - like not making to the restroom in Target and having to leave my underwear and hose in the trash just to get home or the one about the accident at work. That they don't need to know, but you would be surprised how much you can help others just by getting through each day.

Good luck and I hope this helps.
Red (Lee Ann)
 Happy Bunny 
      When life gives you lemons, squirt juice in your enemy's eyes.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 4/9/2008 8:30 AM (GMT -6)   
On the days when I am having "one" of those days, I put on a super overnight long maxi pad.  Then if I do have an accident, at least, I'm covered.  That just somehow makes it easier in my head.  But I have had the accidents, and I've had to leave my undies in the trash.  I always keep extra in my bag under my desk, just in case too.


CD 19 years offically, 29 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Symptoms constantly but all tests show only minor ulcerations. Currently having multiple episodes of gastritis with no known cause.

Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 4/9/2008 8:52 AM (GMT -6)   
I do the same as Zanne, only I were one every time I leave the house.  There have been times that this is still not enough protection and I have left unide in trash cans too!  I hate it, and am very tired of it...but it is what it is. Until recently I didn't realize that this was affecting me mentally.  I never talked to anyone about it, just tried to keep it hidden.  I guess I did not want anyone to feel sorry for me; and also was embarrassed about the situation.  I got to the point that everytime I had to leave the house I would have a panic attack.  I have been seeing a counselor adn she has helped me tremendously.  Most people are very understanding and I agree RedAdmin; most people admire us for being able to deal with all we deal with.  There is nothing we can do, so we might as well let people know up front that we have this DD and this happens sometimes.

Diagnosed 1972 with UC (12 years old); many flares over the years
1994 had my son and became very ill; took 4 years to get the correct diagnosis.
PCP diagnosed with IBS and was down 70lbs. by the time I insisted on seeing a specialist.
1997 Diagnosed  with Fistulizing Crohn's
1998 had 1ft. of small intestine removed including terminal illieum, have had constant diarrhea since.
Currently taking imuran, prilosec, synthroid, zoloft, xanax & B12

Julia Hill
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 543
   Posted 4/9/2008 9:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Oh, how I know that feeling!  After 3 resections and periannal crohn's, I have more then my share of accidents.  I know this sounds humiliating, but I wear a long pad or a depend.  If nothing else, this buys me time in my race for the bathroom.  I also carry a spare change of clothes and some wet ones in a back pack.  That way I am always prepared for anything.  If I didn't take 2 imodium every morning, I would not be able to leave my house.  If you find this is a problem for you, talk it over with your GI.  I'm sure he or she has heard this many times from many patients and will have solution for you that fits your crohn's needs.  Take care, and smiling!  If you have another accident, think of us and remember your not alone.

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 4/9/2008 4:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you everyone, you have helped me put things back into perspective, this is not something that I can help and if people don't understand that, then too bad. I can face them after all I think the fear and embarrassment is felt by me not others.

I will take extra Immodium today just to feel safe but will not make it a habit.

Thank you guys for your support and helping me see things in a different light, I don't know what I would do without you.
Diagnosed with Crohns May 2005, been sick for years prior - D and arthritis including AS. Also have severely scarring of my Oesophegus, Bacterial Overgrowth of Bowell and severe migraines.

Currently taking: 6MP; Pentasa; Cipro; Zoplicane; Venlafaxin; Somac; Metropolol; Immigran; Glucosamine; Folic Acid; Calcium; Calciferol; B12 injections; Multi Vitamins; Loperamide and Coedine, phew!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2527
   Posted 4/9/2008 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I suggest a spare pair of underwear and pants. If you dont have a locker, drawer or something to keep them in maybe leave the spares in your car. Another option is a sanitary pad placed in the back end of your underwear.
Dx with Crohn's 1987, symptoms as early as 1984.
Temp iliostomy February 2007, reversed June 2007, Ovarian cysts, migraines, allergies (incl food allergies) , oral allergy syndrome (diff than true food allergies), Asthma, Gall Bladder removed 1999, Inguenal hernia 1987

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 4219
   Posted 4/9/2008 7:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Dark pants and dark underwear for a few days should help you feel more confident too! Once you have a couple succesful days it should be a lot easier. Remember you can always go home sick without too much explanation if something was to happen or if you get there and just feel totally uncomfortable. Finally, try to avoid situations you can't easily excuse yourself from for a couple days. Or just say to a coworker you have to meet with "I am not feeling so great so if I jet off its nothing personal and I'll be back soon." Last but not least, don't trust a fart, for awhile!
26 Year old married female law student.  Diagnosed w/ CD 3 years ago, IBS for over 10 years before that, which was probably the CD.  I am sort of lactose intollerant too but can handle anything cultured and do well w/ lactose pills and lactaid.  For crohns I am currently on Pentasa 4 pills/4x day and hysociamine prn.  I also have bad acid reflux and have been on PPI's since age 13.  I have been through prilosec, prevacid, and nexium.  Currently I am on Protonix in the morning and Zantac at night.  I alos take a birth control pill to allow some fun in my life.

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