I'm sorry to hear about
what you're going through. Hope you get some relief soon. I have no experience with Imuran, but I had an allergic reaction to the bisglycinate iron (incredibly itchy rash and hives all over my torso) that started a day or two after I started it. The doctor thought it was a heat rash at first, then some type of yeast infection but it didn't respond to anything... took about
a week to figure it out. A very miserable week.
On a side note, iron is just terrible for the colon. I've been researching it this week, after ending up in the ER last weekend with horrible bloody diarrhea. My colonoscopy yesterday showed 20 cm of inflammation in my descending colon, but no other problems. After trying to figure out what caused this to happen, I went back through my food/med diary and made a chart to see what was different. I had eaten some gluten and some dairy over the past two months, which I haven't done in a long time, but nothing in a while so I didn't think it was that. I had also taken Advil and aspirin a couple of times in March and April, but nothing for a month. What was significant, however, was that my doctor had started me on oral iron supplements because my ferritin level is low. I started them sporadically in April, but took them EVERY DAY in May. They were touted as being "gentler on the digestive system" (one was a ferrous fumarate formula with a stool softener mixed in, and one was a polysaccahride iron complex) but I found that there is really no such thing as gentle on the digestive system when it comes to non-heme iron.
I also attribute my inflammation to the iron because of the
location of it: in the descending colon, where stool is held. If it had been caused by the gluten or dairy or Advil or aspirin, I would have expected them to see small ulcers or inflammation MUCH higher up in the digestive tract. But the fact is, so little of the oral iron we take is absorbed, and the rest just passes on through to the colon. It has contact with the entire mucosal lining along the way, but where it really lingers and stays in contact with the colon mucosa is in the descending colon while the stool forms.
Here are some of the things I found:
I'm looking into alternative forms of iron (possibly a heme-iron product like Proferrin) to raise my ferritin levels. I will never take a non-heme iron supplement again.
Just want to spread the word so that other people can be on the lookout for this kind of reaction, too, since so many of us are anemic and taking some form of iron. I'm wondering if these iron supplements aren't doing us more harm then good. There has to be a better way.
Best of luck to you!
Crohn's possibly since early 20's (bowel obstruction)
Colonoscopy 2008: ulcers in rectum
Small capsule endoscopy: ulcers in terminal ileum
Chronis RLQ pain, no diarrhea
Gluten-free, dairy-free, low sugar diet
Post Edited (AMinNJ) : 5/28/2010 2:38:42 PM (GMT-6)