IBS AND Ulcerative Colitis

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DixieS
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 92
   Posted 1/9/2006 11:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Just wondering if anyone out there has this same lovely combo of diseases?
 
I was diagnosed with UC a couple of years ago, but my GI just informed me that I also have irritable bowel. 
 
SO... he says that there isn't anything that I can do for the IBS until I have the colitis under control, as the meds for IBS will make the UC worse.
 
In the meantime, I have a lot of diarrhea that is bloody, mucousy, and comes after incredible urgency.  I have a lot of abdominal pain and discomfort.  I am tired all of the time, depressed, anxious and basically feeling lousy in general.
 
I am seeing another gastroenterologist on the 19th. 
What can I do in the meantime to feel better?
Dixie

7Lil
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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 1/9/2006 11:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Dixie,
Are you taking a high dose of probiotics? I have heard many people with IBD do well taking these in abundance.
What about a fiber supplement? That too might help bulk up your stool.
Take care...
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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dbab
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Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 1/9/2006 11:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Dixie,
I have both IBS and UC however I don't have too much info on the combo as I was just dx'd with UC this year. I haven't had much problems with it as I don't think that I have had a major flare yet (I have had some bleeding but it was very intermite). My doc did not say anything about the medications interacting however all I take for my IBS is symax (antispasmodic) and fiber (OTC). Usually doctors will give IBS dx after UC if your diet is contributing to your symptoms as diet is not really supposed to affect your symptoms for IBD however it is hard to distinguish when you are flaring. I hope you can get better answers from your new GI. A heating pad helps me with the pain sometimes and the antispasmodic as well. I take Darvocet occasionally for my back but I have noticed that it will ease the abdominal pain too.
Hugs, Des
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Keriamon
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 1/9/2006 12:44 PM (GMT -7)   
This has come up before and will probably help Dixie too, if anyone knows the answer: how can you have both UC (or Crohn's) AND have IBS? Isn't the IBD that messes up your intestines? I would think that even if you aren't in the middle of having ulcers, the IBD itself would still mess up your intestines, so it would always be your problem. I mean you can't have both UC and Crohn's, even if your Crohn's ulcers don't always look like Crohn's ulcers and maybe sometimes look like UC ulcers. That doesn't mean you have both. Looks to me it's like saying you have the flu and a cold at the same time because sometimes your flu symptoms look a bit like a cold. Well, duh! They are both similar. How do they know that what looks like IBS in a person KNOWN to have UC or Crohn's isn't just a manifestation of the disease they know they have?? I would think that a definiton of UC or Crohn's would naturally include irritable bowel and it wouldn't be labeled separately; I mean, after all, those ulcers have to make the bowels angry. And whatever causes the ulcers probably causes other malfuntions too.

dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 1/9/2006 12:55 PM (GMT -7)   
Keri,
You can have both according to my doc and I know this continues to be a debate. IBS is a functional disorder. My doc told me that if your IBD is in remission, you should not be having symptoms period. Remission is remission. If you continue to have symptoms while in remission and these symptoms are caused by your food choices, stress and other things than the symptoms are most likely caused by IBS. Also, even though it is very rare, you can have both UC and Crohn's but you won't see that too often.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
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dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 1/9/2006 12:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Also Keri... I had IBS a long time before I was diagnosed with UC. Not because they didn't find it, because it wasn't there. The symptoms I have had as a teenager were IBS symptoms. Gas pains and spasms are not likely caused by IBD. These are classic symptoms of IBS.
Hugs, Des
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pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20576
   Posted 1/9/2006 1:14 PM (GMT -7)   
This has been an ongoing discussion all over the place, it comes up often. So what I did was I emailed the "Dear Doctor" at the CCFC journal and asked him if one could have both crohns and ulcertive colitis, this was his answer; crohns and colitis CAN likely occur in the same individual, but this is unusual because they are 2 rare diseases. However, there are SEVERAL reports of patients with UC developing CD over time when the diagnosis retrospectively was definitely UC. That's why most surgeons will quote this risk at 2-5% when counselling patients regarding surgical options, because removal of the colon is considered a "cure" for UC, but not for CD because CD can affect anywhere from the mouth to the anus...so there you have it, one individual can actually have BOTH crohns and ulcertive colitis but it's rare...2-5% chance of having both.

As far as one individual having both IBS and IBD, the same doctor from the CCFC who answered my question above, happens to also be my GI and he told me personally that typically the longer one suffers with IBD the higher the risk of developing IBS as well especially if there is little to almost no remission periods, or the periods of remission are short-lasting.

So yes, you can have both UC and CD and IBD as well as IBS.

take care

DixieS
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 92
   Posted 1/10/2006 2:43 PM (GMT -7)   

I don't take probiotics.  I have tried them in the past without a noticeable difference.

IBS and IBD are different.  I just can't seem to tell them apart, because I bleed no matter what. 

Fiber is very hard on you if you are in a UC flare.  I can have cooked veggies, some are better than others.  I also eat fruit, but not skins of things like apples and pears.  Tomato-based sauces are the worst, as they are like rubbing salt on a wound.

It is very cyclical for me, I am in a "flare" for 2 months and then remission for 2 months.  This is not typical of ulcerative colitis, because flares usually last longer and the time of remission is longer. 

I also know that diet and stress play a large role in my flares.  For instance, I began the current flare on Nov. 2, and it was starting to get better when Christmas hit and my sister and her husband came into town and decided to stay with us out of the blue.  You have to understand that we live in a small apartment with three children and have nowhere for them to stay but the couch.  Not to mention that my sister wants to run my life for me.  They stayed Christmas eve, but then I made her go somewhere else the rest of their trip.  I hate standing up to people, because I am a people pleaser.  So not only did I have the stress of them in town and at my place, but I had to kick them out too.  My husband hates them and complains to me when they are in town whether or not they stay with us.

I had a colonoscopy/EGD the end of December and that also seemed to make it worse.  Can you imagine the joy if my sister and brother-in-law had been there for that prep time?

Sorry to complain so much.  Sometimes you just need to get it out.

Thanks for your help.  Dixie


roadtrip
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 1/12/2006 10:07 AM (GMT -7)   

hi there dixie,

i've recently tried aloe vera gel for my IBS after i read about some guy who used it for his UC - i didn't work for me but it might for you as soon as your problem sounds more UC based - i read that after drinking it for a few weeks he was much better - after drinking it for several weeks it sounded like his problems were practically non-existant

I read the story in the Daily Mail ( apaper in the UK)

you never know, it might be worth giving it a go, although once again i'll have to say it didn't work for me confused

 

a word of warning tho- make sure you get the gel and NOT the juice - the juice is a powerfull laxative because it is made from all of the aloe vera leaf, the gel is made from a specific part which does not contain any laxative elements

a company called forever living sell the gel :-)


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20576
   Posted 1/12/2006 12:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Bleeding is definitely related to UC, there is no bleeding or inflammation with IBS,

take care

DixieS
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 92
   Posted 1/12/2006 2:16 PM (GMT -7)   

roadtrip,

Tell me more about the aloe vera.  I have a friend who swears by the juice for anything.  I thought that you couldn't take the gel internally.

Thanks, Dixie


7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 1/12/2006 2:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Here's a great site I bookmarked:
 
http://www.wholehealthmd.com/refshelf/substances_view/1,1525,10001,00.html
 
 
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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roadtrip
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 106
   Posted 1/13/2006 4:00 AM (GMT -7)   

you can take the gel internally if it has been specially treated for consumption (although it doesn't taste very nice!)

I took about 2.5 -3 ounces every morning about a half hour before breakfast (because that's what the guy in the paper does) - but there are quite alot of conflicting guidlines on dosages. I've also read about people who take smaller amounts before every meal and those who take 2 ounces before breakfast and again before dinner - whatever though, it's best to take it on an empty subject

I think the aloe gel may work for some people because, it soothes the aggrevated lining of the bowel which UC causes (which is probably apparent by the bleeding sme suffer etc)

i'll quote the article which i'm taling about - from the Daily Mail, Tuesday October 11th 2004

" A drink made from the aloe vera plant is helping patients control the symptoms of UC, a diesase that effects the bowels. The plant ... appears to have healing properties for inflamation of the gut. Patients who suffrered years of discomfort without releif from conventional medicines claim to be free of symptoms after drinking a tiny amount of the juice [gel] every day. Their testimonies support British research last year which showed one in three sufferers experienced an improvement after drinking the plant solution."

It goes on to talk about a guy called Andy Woodward who uses the stuff.

"Andy Woodward (40), from Shipstonon-Stour in Warwickshire, turned to aloe vera after suffering for several years with painful collitis, 'I was away from home for more than four months of the year,' says Andy. 'On top of that, there was an awful lot of corporate hosptilatity, usually invoving rich food. I was meant to be a professional host, but sometimes I would end up lying in the back of the bus doubled up in pain while my clients went off to dinner." He tried over the counter remedies, to little effect, 'Nothing I took made any difference. They never relieved the symptons, they just postponed them slightly.'"

"Andy then heard about the aloe vera drink from a company called Forever Living Products. He began downing a sherry-glass full of the drink which costs between £12 and £18 a carton, each morning. 'Within a couple of weeks I noticed a difference. My morining stomach cramps were gone and I didn't get that knotted feeling anymore when i ate. That was for years ago and the only time I've had problems since has bee if I go travelling without it. Within days my symptoms return.'

For more information on aloe vera drinks go to www.foreverliving.com"

There are plenty of companies that sell Foreverlivings products over the net, but you can't seem to buy them in stores. Although i suppose other companies gel will be just as good aslong as they contain a high percentaage of aloe and aren't whole leaf products. And once again, make sure you get the gel not the juice which is a laxative!

Hope that helps! :-)       


Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 1/13/2006 7:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Aloe vera juice is certainly soothing on burns and can help them heal faster, so I could see how it would help intestines that have been "burned" or irritated by excess bile or bacterial overgrowth. I don't know how juice performs next to gel, other than juice is also a laxative. Maybe the juice heals better too, though?
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