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tooth fairy
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 98
   Posted 1/20/2008 3:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks to everyone for their postings on this site in the past year. I've been a lurker since my diagnosis last year, and you've been very informative. Here's my UC story:

I was diagnosed with pancolitis in July 2006, 3 days after my second child was born. I had an uneventful pregnancy until my 32nd week, when I began having symptoms that I attributed to "food poisoning-" bloody diarrhea arriving up to 20 times a day (and night!) almost out of nowhere. I had noticed some mucous and light blood in my stool as early as my 12th week of pregnancy, which my OB attributed to hemrhoids, but otherwise had no prior symptoms to this first flare. At any rate, after 3 weeks of treatment for what we thought was food poisoning, then a C-Diff infection, my new GI said he had no choice but to do a flex-sig scope to see what was going on. (In the meantime, pregnant me had lost 10 pounds!) He was understandably wary to scope a very pregnant lady, but we had tried 3 different antibiotics and various anti-spasmodics with no success.

The light prep for the scope induced my labor, so we delivered our son 5 weeks early (now a healthy and happy 18 month old), and opted for a full colonoscopy and upper endoscopy while I was still in the hospital.

My Gi started me on prednisone and asacol and my symptoms began to ease almost immediately. I was unable to come off my steroid taper without flaring again (tried twice with no luck), so ceased nursing my now 4 month old son and started imuran along with the asacol. This kept me in a nice remission for 9 months, but I began having symptoms again in the fall of 2007 and did another 6 week round of steroids over the holiday.

I am currently 2 weeks into a second steriod taper and have still not had a normal bowel movement-everything that I produce is liquid-however I am only needing the bathroom 4 or 5 times a day, which is an improvement from a few weeks ago.

Have any of you had this problem with steroids before, where they were previously effective but suddenly not so? If so, what did you do? I think I need to schedule an appointment with my doc tomorrow to try and sort this out, but any suggestions you all have would be appreciated.

I haven't made a signature yet but here are my stats:
Diagnosed July 2006 at age 29 while pregnant via colonoscopy/upper endoscopy
Imuran 125mg
Asacol, 3 pills, 3x/day
prednizone 20 mg (current dose-in a taper)
flagil as precaution for c-dif (finishing a 10 day run)

UCinNC
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 528
   Posted 1/20/2008 5:08 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Tooth Fairy. Welcome to the forum. I am sure others will have more to say, as I have only been on pred twice and some others here have been on it more and can speak better from experience, but, I do know that my GI is always telling me that prednisone eventually quits being effective. Like everything else with this DD, it is unpredictable.... some people can use pred on and off for years and have great results, while others are steroid resistant from day one, or just quit responding to pred at some point. I know that good GIs operate under the knowledge that pred will eventually stops being useful, which really sucks, but no one can predict when. AND, on top of that, it may not work for one flare, and then another flare it may work..... SO annoying. But, for the record, there is such a thing as UC that just doesn't respond to steroids. The other possibility may be that you are tapering too quickly. It may be that if you go back up on prednisone (which sucks, I know) and you hang out there at a higher dose for awhile, you may be able to get some response to it. But I wouldd definitely talk to your GI before doing that, and do it under his supervision. in any case, if you're still only having liquid BMs, I suggest discussing this with your GI. Hope that helps. and congrats on your recent addition to your family. I am glad to hear it all went smoothly despite the onset of UC. oh, last thought, I know some people on the forum have had their UC mad more by Flagyl, so that could also be causing the D.
29/Female/NC
Pancolitis dx 3/07
9 Colazal a day (used to be on 12 Asacol, don't think Asacol helped)
150mg Imuran/day (steroid dependent, reached this dose 9/07)
Various vitamins, bit of fish oil, a probiotic.


tooth fairy
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 98
   Posted 1/20/2008 8:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, UCinNC! I hadn't considered the Flagyl as suspect, but maybe that is the culprit. Since the steroids were re-started, the blood and mucous is gone, as is most of the urgency. I finish the antibiotics on Tuesday-so maybe I will wait until I'm off the medicines before calling my GI. I haven't had to modify any plans over the weekend, so the symptoms can't be that bad! I am hoping against all hope that the I am not already steroid intolerant!

UCinNC
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 528
   Posted 1/20/2008 9:02 PM (GMT -6)   
it sounds like you're responding now to the pred, so I wouldn't worry about it. but, as a general rule of thumb, it is good to use pred very sparingly (which you probably already know) and also important to be very aware of how antibiotics effect your gut. if you aren't taking a probiotic, you probably should do so while on Flagyl (or on any other antibiotic, or just in general) to restore the good bacteria in your colon. glad you're feeling better.
29/Female/NC
Pancolitis dx 3/07
9 Colazal a day (used to be on 12 Asacol, don't think Asacol helped)
150mg Imuran/day (steroid dependent, reached this dose 9/07)
Various vitamins, bit of fish oil, a probiotic.


dakotagirl
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 3402
   Posted 1/20/2008 9:47 PM (GMT -6)   
I agree about starting the probiotics ASAP to replenish the good bacteria.

Suggestions for easily acquired probiotics - Culturelle is available at Wal-Mart and most drug stores, GNC has several types - just stay away from any with FOS, acidophilus pearls are available at most grocery and drug stores.

Usually you'll notice a difference in a few days. You may also notice extra gas as your body becomes accustomed to the product.

I would suggest staying at your current prednisone dose until you've give the probiotic at least a week. Then if you're stable, you can attempt to taper again.

Another option: up your Asacol to 12 pills per day. Have you tried Canasa or Rowasa? Rectal meds helped me get off of pred (with Imuran too). Not fun, but they treat the inflammation at the source of the problem - the rectum, where all inflammation starts.

Best of luck!

Oh - and Welcome to HealingWell :) Hope to see you around!
Pan-colitis and GERD diagnosed May 2003
 
Asacol 12 per day,  Azathioprine 75mg, Aciphex, Effexor XR, Forvia and a Probiotic
Osteopenia (hip and spine) from prednisone use.  Started Azathioprine because I was steroid dependent.
 
Co-Mod for the UC forum
Keep HealingWell running smoothly:  www.healingwell.com/donate


princesscolon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 733
   Posted 1/20/2008 11:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, welcome to the forum. It sounds like you have been through so much, I would think it must have been scary to have the baby early and have all those tests and wow, it sounds really tough. I am not a doctor, but my guess is that the Prednisone taper might be making you flare. Just my guess. I wouldn't make any changes without speaking to the doctor first.
Diagnosed with Left-sided Ulcerative Colitis 1995 at 15
Tried: Prednisone, Rowasa & Hydrocortisone Enemas, Proctofoam, Sulfasalazine, Asacol, Probiotics, Fish Oil, Canasa, Enotcort, Colazol, Proctocort, Anamantle, etc...
Diagnosed with Ulcerative Proctitis with almost rectovaginal fistula in 2004, put on Remicade, August 2007:Increased Remicade dosage-700mg every 6 weeks,diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis & Fibromyalgia Current meds: Remicade 700mgs every 6 wks (had reaction, will start Humira Jan 29) Clorazepate, Proctofoam HC, Glucosamine 500, Vitamin B, Lomotil as needed, Darvocet, Tylenol pm

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