Do i have Crohns Disease or IBS? This is really starting to scare me....

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New Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 3/10/2009 4:51 PM (GMT -6)   

This is my first time on one of these things so im sorry if i dont know all the lingo. I'm really scared right now cause ive been having problems for the last 6 months and im scared to death i have crohns. My story is as follows......

First off im 25 years old. Back in august of 08 i had a bad case of jock itch that wasn't going away. Creams would not get rid of this thing so i went to my doctor and he wrote me a prescription for a drug called Lamasil (SP). I got the drug and it was 10 pills. I was to take 1 pill a day for 10 days. Now during this time period, i was healthy as healthy could be. I could eat practically anything. I've never had a problem with food my entire life, and when ever i would get the stomach flu, i would always bounce back the next day. I couldn't have asked for a better digestive track. However about 5,6, maybe 7 days into taking lamasil, all that changed. I started to get constipated which normally never happens to me. I know many drugs can cause constipation so i thought nothing of it and kept taking the drug. Eventually i took all 10 pills, and i remained constipated for a week and a half to 2 weeks. Then it happened. On September 5th, I got diarrhea and abdominal cramping like ive never had before......

Now to this day, it has been battling with stomach pain, diarrhea, and occasional constipation. In the 6 months ive had this ive been woken up maybe 5 times with terrible cramps that were relieved when passing a BM. I have lost weight, but i credit this to having to change my diet. No restaurants or fast foods. Just good ol boiled chicken, green beens, and baked potato. Plain foods. So fed up with this i went to the doctor....

When i went to my primary health care, i told them this and they suggested that i have blood work and a stool culture done. So i did! My blood work came back normal and so did the stool culture. No signs of anemia, no high white blood cell counts, no blood in the stool and no inflammation. Next i went to the Gastro. I first saw the nurse practitioner who scared me to death by telling me it was crohns or colitis. However he made this assumption before getting the results of my blood work or cultures, and became very pushy with me having a colonoscopy. I didn't get it and waited to see my moms gastro. Finally i saw the actual doctor who was a nice guy, and made me tell him this story im telling you. He seemed to be certain that the medicine i took was the cause for my problems and that i am suffering from IBS as a result of it. He said the probability that i had crohns or colitis was low. And ended it with. "If you want a colonoscopy to ease your mind, ill give you one. However i don't think you need it".

Now that was back in december when i saw the gastro, and since then my problems have calmed down but suddenly flared up again violently. I still try to remain an active life with all this. Out of 6 months of having this problem ive only missed 2 days of work, first time was when this hit me, and second time was in october.

Does anyone here think i have crohns disease or do you guys think the doctor was right? I'm really getting paranoid over this and i would like to avoid a colonoscopy if possible.

Post Edited (Ryoten) : 3/10/2009 4:10:08 PM (GMT-6)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 3/10/2009 5:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm sorry you have been so under the weather lately. The timing of things would suggest to me that the medicine had something to do with your troubles. Also, the fact that your tests have all been negative. Keep in mind we aren't doctors, but if I were in your position, I would try taking a good strong probiotic for a month or two. The medicine may have upset the balance of good/bad bacteria. There are many different brands available, even a good yogurt would be helpful. I had to try a couple of different brands before I found one that worked for me. But if your doctor thinks its IBS, what if anything did they give you to help you deal with it? There is a blood test available that is pretty accurate at diagnosis for CD and a lot less invasive than a colonoscopy. Some insurances will pay for it, some won't. But it might be something you want to look into depending on how much this is affecting your daily life. There are also CT scans, MRIs, SBFT, Capsule Endoscopies, and I'm sure other tests I've forgotten.

I'm sure there will be others along shortly who will have more advice for you too.

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!

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

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1354
   Posted 3/10/2009 5:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to HW Ryoten, Im sorry that you are suffering so much.
As to whether its IBS or CD that you have, Im not sure.
If I were you I would have a colonoscopy, at least have this done to rule out IBD, blood tests (for me) have never been an accurate indication of whether Im flaring with this disease. If the colonoscopy is inconclusive then ask for a small bowel follow through, as a colonscopy wont pick up diseased areas there.
I hope someone more knowledgeable comes along and can give better advice.
Good luck and heres hoping it was only the meds causing this :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 239
   Posted 3/10/2009 7:02 PM (GMT -6)   
I know the idea of a colonoscopy isn't pleasant, but really, it's not that bad! I've had four over the past two years, and wouldn't hesitate to have another one if my doc wanted it. They can make sure you sleep through it, and the worst part is the prep you do at home the day before. During a scope they take biopsies of your intestinal tissues and that will give them a very good chance at a definitive diagnosis. It might be worth it for the peace of mind! If you do have Crohn's, they can start treatment and get you feeling better, and if you don't have Crohn's, then you can breathe a little easier!
diagnosed w/Crohn's 11/06. 35f with 2 boys and a wonderful husband. 150 mg Imuran, bentyl, entocort, vicodin as needed, Humira, metoprolol for orthostatic hypotension and heart palpitations. Bowel resection 9/07. Active disease back, darn it 8/08. 11 year old son with IBS-C, on Bentyl.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 529
   Posted 3/10/2009 7:52 PM (GMT -6)   
It's hard to say what it is. I had my first colonoscopy done today and I, like you, tried to do everything to avoid it. I had all the other tests done, including the barium enema (which indicated that it was "probably" Crohn's, but they couldn't give me a 100% diagnosis since they cannot take biopsies from it). Anyway, I was so nervous for the test and I thought it was going to be really bad. I thought it would be humiliating and it would hurt with the air and going around all the turns in your intestines, and I was terrified of getting an IV (I hate needles, I was actually in tears before they put it in). The drugs didn't affect me at all that they gave me for whatever reason, and even then, the pain was NOTHING. Honestly, I would rather go through the colonoscopy than a barium enema again, and neither of them was that bad. It's over before you know it, then you spend half an hour in a recovery room. The time went by so quickly. Just for the peace of mind it gives you, I would try to get it over with. After it's done, you'll be laughing over not wanting to have it done. Seriously, it's not as bad as you'd imagine at all!

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20558
   Posted 3/10/2009 8:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I think it's best to get a colonoscopy and probably even upper GI tests done to rule out CD, then that way you'll know that it's more likely to be IBS that's causing you issues.

My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it! LOL :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 3/11/2009 7:43 AM (GMT -6)   
If you feel like a colonscopy is too invasive (like I did when I first got sick, but I finally got so sick I would do anything to get better) why don't you try a pill camera?
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease:_All comments have the caveat contact your local health care provider.

I will find a way or make one. –Phillip Sidney 1554-1586

All that I am and all that I shall ever be, I owe to my Angel Mother.

The Bucket List- Have you found joy in your life?  Has your life brought joy to others?

Make sure your suffering has meaning…

crohn's pt mom
Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 86
   Posted 3/11/2009 3:06 PM (GMT -6)   

I have IBS and my daughter has Crohn's.  I was sick with D and stomach cramps, lost 33 pounds before I was diagnosed with IBS.  They decided it was IBS because I had every test - colonoscopy, endoscopy, cat scan, ultrasounds etc. and nothing else was found.  Now my daughter had some digestive issues for a couple of months before her appendix ruptured, then when she had her resection (because of the ruptured appendix and surrounding infection) they biopsied what they found.  At that time they said it was crohn's, the surgeon (general) said he saw no evidence of crohns.  Once she healed from the resection, that was back in 2006 she was careful of her diet but didn't take any meds for crohns and really was sympton free.  Until the perianal abcess that she's had since last summer.

I guess what I'm saying is take whatever steps necessary, colonoscopy- etc., to find out what it is.  If it is IBS there are meds that can manage it or if it's an IBD then there may be other meds you should be on.  The most difficult thing about a colonoscopy is the stuff you have to drink the day before-  

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 529
   Posted 3/11/2009 4:01 PM (GMT -6)   
Agreed about the prep.. But sadly, you have to do the prep for a lot of the other tests, anyway it seems. Might as well get the most accurate one so you don't have to go through the prep more than once to get diagnosed like I did, or at least have a lower chance of it.

New Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/12/2009 6:38 PM (GMT -6)   
I would highly recommend getting the colonoscopy. A few years ago my son was very ill, losing weight, couldn't eat, etc. I sent him to the doctors 5 times and no one could diagnose what was wrong. Blood tests kept coming back OK. Later he was in severe pain and had a cat-scan. By then he was rushed to the hospital with a major infection in his abdomen. His intestinal wall began to leak causing an e-coli infection. After surgery, he was finally diagnosed with Chron's. If the doctors had determined this earlier, all the surgery could have been avoided. Therefore, I would highly recommend the colonoscopy in order to avoid possible surgery down the road. Knowing exactly what you are dealing with is better than not knowing. If you do have Crohn's, there are many choices of medicines that can help you achieve a more "normal" life than suffering the consequences of not knowing for sure.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 318
   Posted 3/24/2009 5:06 PM (GMT -6)   
shakehead  you know your body better than anyone someone wrote were not doctors but we know signs i went for 2 staight years to the doctors and all my tests came back fine they had the nerve to tell me in the end that it was all in my head i went to a different hospital and left a brand new cronhes patient with a gastro feeding tube in my belly,its highly possiable that it is only IBS but i would look into it alittle more if your worried about it i had my disease for 17 years now and 14 major surgeries later numerous meds alot that cause terriable side effects but i keep my head up now i am on another new drug called Humira that i inject myself scary yes but treatable yes and life does go on and if it is cronhes than you will learn how to deal with it just make sure you got lots of friends and family for support people that understand what your going through helps alot this is a good place for you right here.

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 3/24/2009 7:08 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm not going to do the colonoscopy. I'd rather do the upper GI and wait till the barrium hits my colon to detect inflammation. Other than that i really think its the medicine i took.

The more ive researched crohns, the more i dont think i have it. Alot of people told me there are days you cant get out of bed, and you go to the hospital and you feel generally bad. My problem is a i just have D and a lot of gas. I've never felt like i cant go to work or that i need to go to the hospital. Plus ive been taking citrucel and it seems to have my D more under control. Someone with crohns told me citrucel would not be working to control it if i had it.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 66
   Posted 3/25/2009 8:39 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Ryoten, sorry you are feeling bad...

I don´t know if the GI thing is the same as enteroclysis, but if so, strongly recommend the colonoscopy for a start, it´s not as bad ... I personally hate the prep with colonoscopy, but much better than I take enteroclysis (having a tube shoved down your nose all the way to yout upper intestine, then baryum in it and Xray)...

As to you only having D and gas, I only had pain on my right side before they diagnosed me...

Good luck!
Diagnosed with Crohn´s in 2005, 3 surgeries, . Pentasa 2x2, Budenoflak 1x2, 30 yrs old mother of two. Boy 05/2005 and girl 03/2009

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 529
   Posted 3/25/2009 10:48 AM (GMT -6)   
You can't always go by what people say, Crohn's is really different in everyone. I NEVER went to the hospital before I got diagnosed, and there were some days where I didn't feel like getting out of bed but I pretty much always have. It really depends on how you deal with the symptoms and how severe it is. Apparently mine is really severe but I feel fine a lot of the time.

Apparently the Upper GI is worse than a colonoscopy btw - I've never had one but everyone I know who's had one would pick a colonoscopy every day. I was like you and wanted to do a barium test first, I ended up doing the barium enema which did show that I probably had Crohn's, but I still had to get the colonoscopy done anyway, and it really wasn't all that much better. The prep is the worst part and you have to do it for all the tests anyway...

Anyway, with all that said, I think after everything you've said, it probably is just IBS or something, but then again, you never know. I thought I just had IBS, and the IBS meds worked for a while, then they slowly stopped working and I began to question it. When I got diagnosed with Crohn's, my first reaction was that it isn't nearly as bad as what a lot of people on the internet say it is, which made me second guess if it could really be Crohn's. As I said though, no one copes with it the same...
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