ASellers, I originally was diagnosed with UC then later they changed the DX to Crohn's - it's not uncommon. It can be scary at first but it's good they found the fistula and a good colorectal surgeon can help repair it! I haven't taken Stelara but am currently on Humira (and methotrexate and prednisone after a recent flare) and before that was on Remicade and 6mp. Last month during my flare I had a CT scan that showed an abscess and a possible fistula - it turned out it was only an abscess, and was fixed with surgery. How did they diagnose your fistula? The good news is that if you're in pain then the surgery can help alleviate that quickly.
How did your friend die from Crohn's if you don't mind my asking? If that is one of your concerns it may help to know that it seems it's usually it's complication from the disease that progress and are left untreated that cause serious situations. It is rare to actually die of Crohn's so try not to worry about
that. Also, with all the medicines we have today they really can do a great job of controlling your symptoms. Talking about
it helps, especially with other people who have Crohn's and UC so def have a support network, you're not alone!