So what's a FLARE? Did I have one?

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Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/10/2010 10:44 AM (GMT -7)   
So my digestive system just kept going downhill the past few months, diarrhea here and there (no rhyme or reason to it) and I already have food sensitivities and avoid wheat then gluten, milk (but not greek yogurt and stuff), barely, soy, spicey foods, etc. I thought I was just getting more and more food allergies or yeast or something. I already am healthy (health nut) worked out, organic as much as possible, etc.
 
I also stopped caffeine and splenda but will have decaf organic coffee or a Sbux decaf once in awhile.
 
So my digestion was getting horrible. My Naturopath thought I was getting Diverticulitus again (which my Gastro says I never had, the ER last summer misdiagnosed me), so she gave me Flagyl, I was excited to "clear it up" and get back to feeling normal and then BOOM....10x worse, I had to stop it.
 
I got anxiety really bad, depression, cramps, shakes, stomach wakes me up at 3:30 and 4 am and I have to go back to sleep and do relaxing techniques. I couldn't eat much for a week I was scared of food and then got sick of being hungry, so I stick to a very bland diet, but gonna go get me some liquid vitamins so I don't get malnourished or anything. I am feeling "better", but yes, still diarrhea, cramps, shaking, irritability and I use spirituality, positive thinking, meditation, relaxation to get through it and sometimes it lasts for hours. Sometimes it'll wake me up and I'll have anxiety in the mornings. This is all out of the blue.
 
Was this a flare? Does it get better and better with probiotics, rest, eating good and so on?
-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 3/10/2010 10:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Well antibiotics are not always a Crohnie's friend. I took Cipro recently for a second time and it tore my stomach up bad. So bad in fact that I had to stop it. So I think you just got irritated from the antibiotics and it took you a bit to get over it. Also anxiety will cause diarrhea and nausea symptoms too. When I am feeling bad I tend to go on a VERY bland and light diet until things quiet down. Hope that helps.
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Kittikatt
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 3/10/2010 11:11 AM (GMT -7)   

I agree with Nanners...antibiotics can mess up the digestive system...and stress - good lord - what ailment CAN'T be traced back to STRESS?!smhair

From my experience, if your bowels are waking you up at night, you're in a flare.  That's certainly not the only predictor but definitely one of them.  As my GI says, "Your bowels are supposed to sleep when you sleep.  If they wake you up, something's wrong."  When I'm in a really bad flare, I'll wake every hour during the night. 

I'm curious as to what maintenance drug you're taking.  You only mentioned spirituality, positive thinking, meditation, relaxation, probiotics, rest, eating good, etc. as your healing tools.


Diagnosed in October, 2004 at age 32 (misdiagnosed with IBS in 2002)
38/F/SC
Current Rx's: Colazal (generic), Omeprazole (PRN), Librax, One-A-Day multivitamin, Probiotic, Omega-3 Fish Oil, Vitamin D, Cranberry pills; Slow Fe (PRN) 
Secondary conditions: swelling ankles, extreme fatigue, mouth ulcers, joint pain
Previous/occasional Rx's: Prednisone, Flagyl, Levaquin, Xifaxan, Carafate
4/7/09: Gall bladder removal laproscopic surgery (gall stones)


artist guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 1373
   Posted 3/10/2010 11:30 AM (GMT -7)   
I cannot take antibiotics, the worst d in the world, but you should talk to dr about med's for your cd, good diet is great but cds can be tougher than diet requires med's beleive me i tried that way for years, now I'm forced to go the med route and never went off of strict diet

artist guy


Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/10/2010 4:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Well I'm feeling better daily. I just had this "flare" I guess my digestive was going downhill and the Flagyl just set it off even worse. I didn't have anxiety before then, I'm sure that I was mildly depressed/stressed and the combination of all these "unknowns" made me feel awful. So I went from eating normally (well I eat pretty good for a normal person) to being scared to eat. I was huddling my gut all night and had a hard time going to sleep/staying asleep, I'd wake up to diarrhea a couple times early in the morning, I would get anxiety and stomach nausea all morning until about noon. Lots of nausea, cramps, shaking, anxiety, irritability, acid reflux and stuff. I spent a whole week scared of eating and stopped except a few bites here and there and then I got sick of that, so I am just sticking to: coconut stuff, coconut milk, rice milk, rice bread, bananas, quinoa noodles, chicken broth, (not sure if Greek Yogurt will set me off, a fav of mine), sometimes cashew bars, deli turkey meat, chicken breast and eggs. NO condiments and I'm nervous to have cheese or anything right now.


I JUST got diagnosed, so I have no idea where to start, except to experiment w/foods and just stick to my BLAND diet that I've been eating (btw I have lost 13 lbs through all this stuff the past 3 weeks) and that seems to help. I get scared to go out of my bland-ish diet, like I tried frozen blueberries yesterday and I think my gut didn't like it too much. I take anti-diarrheals daily (just 1/2 a pill) and that gets rid of most crampy feelings during the day and on day 2 of Prilosec (I've never tried anything like that before for the Gerd part of it). I guess I'm visiting the book store this weekend.

Also: my food allergies' test will be back in a week and half, cannot wait to see results.

Moral of my story: do not take anitbiotics unless you know for SURE that you have to. I'm sure I have fungal stuff going on and that contributes to the problem. I'm getting a hold of the anxiety, I think, I also started Wellbutrin, it gets me thru the stressful times, I really don't want to rely on that, though b/c it cost me 167$ yikes.

For some reason MAGNESIUM is helping the anxiety massively.
-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.


PV
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 1177
   Posted 3/10/2010 7:32 PM (GMT -7)   
I agree with Kittikatt, if your bowels wake you up at night, something ain't right. This is what I've observed with my husband. Anytime he's headed to a flare, the first sign is that his bowel movements change (from normal to D), and he wakes up at night to go. Then comes the cramping, the gas pain, the cannot get comfortable no matter what I do feeling, exteme fatigue, joint pain and blood.

It is my opinion that you should be on a maintenance medication for your crohn's. I do not believe that diet and supplements are sufficient to keep this disease at bay and manageable. I think diet can help you keep your symptoms to a minimum - for eg. consuming no sugar or caffeine or carbonated beverage can help keep gas at bay. However, while you are managing your symptoms, the disease continues to ravage your insides undeterred - causing scar formation and strictures that can eventually lead to needing surgery. I highly recommend talking to your GI about maintenance medication - and you don't have to start with the big guns, you can start with the mesalamine kind, which is pretty gentle and hopefully that will keep you healthy for a long time.

I highly recommend the low residue diet (just soft white food, very low fiber or roughage - eg. chicken, plain pasta, white rice, saltine crackers, campbell's chicken noodle soup) when you are flaring since roughage can make things worse. I'd avoid the nuts and coconut (fibrous). Also, I'd avoid eggs, since I've read that eggs can give you the runs.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents. I hope you get to feeling 100% soon.

PV
Husband with Crohn's
Diagnosed March 2003 Ulcerative Proctitis
Diagnosed March 2008 Crohn's & C-diff, hospitalized 45 days
Crohn's in Remission since June 2008
C-diff recurrence Sep 2009
Reactive Arthritis Nov 2009
Currently c-diff free
Osteopenia of spine (Mar 2010)
Canasa (1gm), Lialda (4.8 gms), Remicade (8 weeks)
Currently In Remission


Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/10/2010 9:07 PM (GMT -7)   
I hope to be feeling good soon, too. Great, I thought coconut bars were helping! lol. I should try Greek yogurt, it's a fav of mine, but since it's made w/cow's milk, not sure. I was going to make chicken noodle soup tonight, but I overdid it today and got very tired. So maybe tomorrow. I ate a small bowl of buckwheat cereal for dinner w/rice milk. I do not want to get too low on aminos, so I may need a replacer sometime. Not sure what that med is, but I will look into it and I need to make sure my biopsies come back confirming Crohn's.

wow you were hospitalized 45 days? I'm sorry!

I don't think the eggs are giving me runs, but I'll keep an eye out and I'm a healthnut, so it's really hard to go from my usual brown rice to white rice, but I can get some gluten-free white crackers and stuff. I'll lay off any fiber, I found it wasn't helping anyway and right now on Prilosec for the Gerd stuff so I hope that helps some digestive issues.
-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.


Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/10/2010 9:09 PM (GMT -7)   
Nanners said...
Well antibiotics are not always a Crohnie's friend. I took Cipro recently for a second time and it tore my stomach up bad. So bad in fact that I had to stop it. So I think you just got irritated from the antibiotics and it took you a bit to get over it. Also anxiety will cause diarrhea and nausea symptoms too. When I am feeling bad I tend to go on a VERY bland and light diet until things quiet down. Hope that helps.

 

Probably. I'm scared to touch medications now and foods, but I'm learning to get through the anxiety of it all. Yes, a bland diet.


-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.


Grandpato2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 681
   Posted 3/11/2010 12:27 AM (GMT -7)   
The cashew bars triggered an alert for me unless the cashews are powdered. During a flare up what happens internally are sores(lesions), if a small piece of nut ends up in a sore you can get infections which can cause narrowing of the intestine which leads to more trouble. So general rule is no nuts, seeds or whole corn. I've just re-started the meditation again after years of being lazy, I'm hoping to see reductions in my stress levels. Stress caused by fear of the future. Rob
Male, 54 years old with Crohn's since 15 years old, diagnosed at age 46. Terminal ileum resected 2002. 5 months of remission. Crohn's has now been active since early 2003. Had a gall bladder removed Nov. of 2009. Currently on Remicade every 8 weeks, Nexium, Iron, B-12 injection every 4 weeks,5-asa Asacol, Morphine Sulfate as needed for pain. Cymbalta for long term pain control. 5-asa Salofalk, Entecort, Imuran and Prednisone in the past.


Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/11/2010 12:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Maybe I need to stick to nut butters instead.

So hard to find what I can eat, it seems so limited. At least I'm getting thinner, lol....a positive.
-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.


newfoundsun
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 145
   Posted 3/12/2010 4:01 PM (GMT -7)   
When I first went to see my dr. about my bowel issues (at a HUGE university hospital....their Digestive Disease Center no less!) this doc who said Crohn's is his "speciality" put me on a 10 day round of Flagyl just to "reset everything" in my gut.  Well, needless to say, my symptoms were the WORST they ever were for 3 days after I finished the medication.  Now, I read here how Crohn's can be set off by antibiotics.  I have and will always wonder.....this doctor had the suspicion that I had Crohn's, so why ON EARTH did he give me that antibiotic?????
 
Okay, that's my grrrrrrrrrrrrr moment for today.  smilewinkgrin
newfoundsun
 
http://www.newfoundsun.wordpress.com/  (my blog about this journey I have just started)
 
CD diagnosed 11/12/09
Seeing a Naturopath and modifying my diet, so far


Peaceandhappiness
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 3/12/2010 4:50 PM (GMT -7)   
newfoundsun said...
When I first went to see my dr. about my bowel issues (at a HUGE university hospital....their Digestive Disease Center no less!) this doc who said Crohn's is his "speciality" put me on a 10 day round of Flagyl just to "reset everything" in my gut.  Well, needless to say, my symptoms were the WORST they ever were for 3 days after I finished the medication.  Now, I read here how Crohn's can be set off by antibiotics.  I have and will always wonder.....this doctor had the suspicion that I had Crohn's, so why ON EARTH did he give me that antibiotic?????
 
Okay, that's my grrrrrrrrrrrrr moment for today.  smilewinkgrin
 
 
Here's a GRRR for you b/c that happened to me. My Natpath put me on Flagyl, she thought my (what they *thought* I had last summer was Diverticulitus and I had Flagyl and Cipro then and it went away and I barely EVER take antibiotics, it's been YEARS) so she gives me Flagyl and by the 5th pill (1.5 days) 500mgs x3x a day....I was sicker than I'd ever been (even though my digestion was going downhill anyway), maybe it flared a huge fungal infection or I'm allergic to it, I don't know. But stomach was worse ever since then and anxiety and depression came out of nowhere I was SHAKING for a couple weeks and scared as heck, in lots of pain. I didn't eat for a week and hated the low blood sugar feeling so now I eat and it's blandish and I feel a lot better, almost like toward normal. I wouldn't *say* normal, I still have my morning diarrhea, nausea, some anxiety/depression and my back hurts and weak (I hate feeling weak b/c I like to "get stuff done" and workout). So I can't wait to get back to walking or maybe I'll start some gentle yoga. I'd like to do swimming, ha ha. But no.  The ER also tried to give me Cipro (just in case it was bacterial) and I was like hhhhhhhhhhheck no.
 
So now I'm taking as many probiotics as I can to try and help, positive thinking, heat packs on belly, bland-ish diet, chewing my food massively. I've lost 13 lbs and I'm looking thinner and thinner, I should be happier about that, but being *ill* to lose weight is not fun. I guess I'll be down a good 30 lbs here in no time that will be good b/c I really need some weight loss and I also have NO WORRIES about my blood sugar anymore after my colonoscopy, and fasting all day and night, I kept taking my blood sugar and I don't get it anymore (a weight lifted) prob b/c I eat several small meals per day and eat so good ( a positive)!
 
Another positive is that I take so many supplements/vitamins that I never barely ever get *sick* like colds, sore throats, flus or anything. I've also kept my thyroid well for awhile, sometimes it dips low, I catch it, feel tireder or depressed a bit and then take a little more medication slowly and I tolerate better than I did in the past (which means I also try to heal my stress hormones to be able to tolerate meds).
 
So weird that Flagyl made my body respond like it did b/c I would (consider) myself normally pretty healthy.


-Mom of a preschool boy and teenage girl and wife to a wonderful man.
 
Hypothyroid, newly dx'd Crohn's, Gerd. I love to look for natural ways to heal first, conventional ways second and keep my faith.

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