crohn's progression??

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Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 123
   Posted Yesterday 4:07 PM (GMT -7)   
I was just wondering if Crohn's gets worse the longer you have it? Or if it generally stays the same?? I know there can't be a definite answer so I guess im really asking those of you who have had it for a while(10 years +), has it progressed or stayed generally the same as when you were first diagnosed? By worse I mean, shorter periods between remission from the first diagnosis and even worse symtoms. For example, maybe you were diagnosed say 12 years ago, and at that time only had 1 flare up per year but now are having 2 or 3 a year?
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Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted Yesterday 4:32 PM (GMT -7)   
For the majority of patients who have complications like structures and fistulsa, CD tends to progress over time, since the complications recur and often require additional surgeries. But for about 25%, symptoms are pretty stable and consistent over time. I am fortunate to be in the latter category, with 40-plus years of active disease and no major complications, surgeries, etc. in all that time, and with symptoms that are fairly well controlled. Really you answered your own question -- each patient is unique and there's no way to draw general conclusions from anyone else's experience. As a broad rule though, CD patients with major complications can usually expect to see more of them as time goes on.

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 82
   Posted Today 10:23 AM (GMT -7)   
I've had mild to moderate Crohns for 34 years.  Personally, my 'typical' Crohns symptoms (cramping, uncontrollable diarrahea, bloody stools, etc.) have improved over time because the medications have improved and I've gotten smarter about how to better control the disease.   My flare-ups are much less frequent (like about one per year, versus nearly every month in my teens and twenties). On the downside, I have several Crohns side-affects (joint pain, fatigue, neuropathy, depression) now that I didn't have 20, or even 10, years ago.  Also, it takes longer to recover from those occassional flare-ups, probably just because I'm older.
I think people with moderate to severe Crohns who have had surgeries would have a different story to tell.
DX: mild to moderate Crohn's for 34 years
Additional benefits: chronic anemia, B12 deficient, peripheral neuropathy, facial mylagsia, joint pain, underactive thyriod
Current meds: Colozal, Nexium, Entocort, Flagyl, steriod cream, monthly B12 injections, Neurontin, Synthroid, Effexor ER, pain meds as needed

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted Today 10:41 AM (GMT -7)   
Although nothing is written in stone, researchers have discovered at least 9 different gene clusters that contribute to the development of IBD and define the severity and behavior of the disease over time....

I've had it for going on 17 yrs and for the most part it's been the same with occassion of it being severe to moderate....I've been in some degree of a flare the entire time I've had it, never being in full remission.

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

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2527
   Posted Today 11:37 AM (GMT -7)   
I have had CD for 20 years now. My biggest complaint over those years was the inflammatory arthritis from the CD. My gut symptoms did well on meds until August of 06. I started to flare my GI didnt believe me even after a ct and a CT enterography. Then Feb of 07 I was rushed to the ER I had a perforated ileum and a fever that later that day spiked to 104, it was 102 when I headed to the clinic they transferred me via ambulance to the er. I had to have Sx and had complications so then another emergency surgery 1 week after the first emergency surgery. Then more complications with that one. I had the temp ostomy reversed in june as well as ridding me of the abscess that wouldnt go away with AB's and a drain plus other problems. Most people they say have 3-5 years with no symptoms after Sx I however only had a few months with no CD symptoms. This September I had a fistula break through in the scar area and I still have this fistula, going for a fistulagram tomorrow and a colonoscopy next week to see what needs to be removed in my next surgery
Dx with Crohn's 1987, symptoms as early as 1984.
Temp iliostomy February 2007, reversed June 2007, Ovarian cysts, migraines, allergies (incl food allergies) , oral allergy syndrome (diff than true food allergies), Asthma, Gall Bladder removed 1999, Inguenal hernia 1987

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 289
   Posted 12/14/2007 5:32 AM (GMT -7)   
During the first 15 years of having CD, my symptoms were fairly mild and typical. Over the last 5 years, I've had more recurrent flare-ups, with the flares getting progressively worse. Last years flare-up was the worst I've ever experienced. Put me out of work for 4 months. Since I started taking Remicade this year, my symptons have been much better. I'm just hoping that I stay in remission for awhile now.
Current Medications:

Pentssa, 1000 mg qid
Vitamin B Complex
Trader Joe's Probiotic
Folic Acid
Remicade infusion; every 8 weeks
Ambien, PRN
Seasilver Whole Food Liquid Nutrition

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