Short term disability after hospitalization?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 53
   Posted 3/16/2008 9:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Is it common to take time off of work after a major hospitalization? I was just discharged after a 13 night stay. I will give you the major details, but the "back to work question" still remains...

Was walking around with UC since late October 07 - untreated, not diagnosed yet. Ended up in the emergency room in a major flare that did not respond to IV steroids. Morphine barely helped the pain and surgeons were lining up around my bed daily. Ended up being diagnosed with severe pancolitis and after my 10th hospital day I was started on Remicade. Never stopped the IV steroids and currently I am on 40 mg prednisone and Remicade only. Never had surgery.

I'm home now on Remicade, prednisone, soft diet (with ensure). Next dose of Remicade is Tuesday. My weight is still down about 15 pounds (all lost during this hospitalization or maybe just prior to admission). I'm 5 feet two inches and now weight about 105 lbs.
I'm generally weak, have some rectal pain, but the remicade seems to be working. I'm absolutely NOT sleeping -- steroids?

It seems that I may be given a couple of weeks or more of time off of work. I have a follow up appointment on March 31.

I have a "desk" job in a hospital with some flexibility.

This is all new to me and although a feel much better I'm not sure what to ask for or what they will give me in terms of time off. I'm a 20 year employee in a huge organization and I have never used medical benefits before -- geez I never even miss work for anything!

I just don't know how to handle this short term disability thing. Please share your experiences....
Thank you.

Sorry this post is so long......


Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 6448
   Posted 3/16/2008 9:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Charmin, I'm so sorry to hear of your hospital stay. I think it's a great idea to take the time and let your body rest right now and slowly get back into a routine. You've been through a lot! I know it's hard to do especially if you've never really taken any time off due to health especially after working for a company for 20 years. I'm sure they are appreciative of it, but want you to come back feeling much better. I'm going to bet that the lack of sleep is due to the Prednisone, even more of a reason to take the time and let your system adjust. Remicade has done wonders for me, and I hope it continues working for you. Take care, and keep us updated on how you are doing.

Remicade - will have my 21th infusion on April 17.
Vitamin B-12/Biotin, Probiotics
Co-Moderator for the UC Forum

Elite Member

Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 3/16/2008 10:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Charmin, if you're in the US, they have to allow you 12 weeks per year for major medical or family major medical (FMLA). Generally you get paid from your sick and vacation leave, although some employers don't make you take that. As far as short term disability, that will depend on your employer's policy. Check with your Human Resources department on that.
Moderate to severe left-sided UC (21 cm) diagnosed 2001.
Asacol, Rowasa, Pentasa, Prednisone, Entocort, Azathioprine
Colazal,  Remicade, Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri.
In remission since April, 2006. Remicade has been my wonder drug.
Co-Moderator UC Forum

tabitha m
Regular Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 139
   Posted 3/18/2008 12:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi charmin

I had 4 weeks off after hospital stay and boy did i need it . im a chef so have a very physical job but you just feel soooo whacked out , Your body will have lost nutrients and you really need to build yourself back up . I went back to work in the july but in all honesty it was still another 2-3 months till i felt 100%

Good luck

Diagnosed Proctitis 2003
leaped to Pancolitis May 2007
bye bye Pred (fingerscrossed )!
2000mg pentasa a day
omega 3
Allergic to Sulphalizine
In remission since june
Multivitamin and calcium supplement

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 135
   Posted 3/18/2008 12:14 PM (GMT -6)   

Hey Charmin

I went on two week disability after my last hospitalization.  I probably needed more time but my doc only gave me what she felt was needed.

The red tape to get time off for a disability was a nightmare for me.  I spent my first week of my disability trying to get all the paper work in order with my insurance company and my empolyer.   Never had to go on disability before so I just kind of jumped into it blindly and it took a lot of work just to get me approved.  I really, really hope I never have to do that agian.

But I hope everything works out for you.  Take care.... 

Pancolitis - Diagnosed on 9/6/07
Asacol 4 pills 3x's daily
Imuran 150mg.
Prednisone 10mg.
Calcium with Vit. D Tablets

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