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Concerned Wife in WA
Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 37
   Posted 6/6/2008 11:35 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello again. I posted yesterday and wanted to do a follow up post about work.

My husband is a commercial crab fisherman like on the deadliest catch. He was just diagnosed with SEVERE UC and spent almost 2 weeks in the hospital. He is still in a lot of discomfort and feels drained and weak, sore etc. I am sure after reading posts yesterday due to the steroids.

He was supposed to go to work in Alaska in a week and had to send someone in his place.

His BIG concern is that with all we have been understanding about this he could have a major flare up like this again and this last time he didn't eat for over 3 weeks. They had to IV feed him in the hospital. He wonders how he could be on a ship in the middle of the Bering Sea and have a flare up what would he do?

Do you usually get enough notice that he would have time to take meds and calm it down or does he have enough time to wait a few weeks till the boat gets back to Port to try to fly home>
Any thoughts would really be helpful.

He has been fishing for 25 years and it is his livelihood. He has 2 kids supporting in college and we have a lot of our own bills. If he can't go to work we would have to sell our house.

Please give us your thoughts. the stress from worrying about this is tearing him up. As I am sure you all know that isn't helping.
Crab Fisherman in Alaska

Diagnosed May 2008
Mesalamine 12 pills daily
Prednisone 40 mg

Taking multiple vitamin supplements, lots of omega 3's and Antioxidants

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 3402
   Posted 6/6/2008 12:47 PM (GMT -6)   
I was watching Deadliest Catch a few nights ago and was wondering how anyone with a UC flare would be able to survive out there.

Here are my concerns. With UC I find that I need more sleep than "normal" people. With the hours those guys work, would he be able to get enough sleep? Will he have easy access to the bathroom? How is the food they eat? I know they eat a lot of food. Is it relatively fatty? I know they need the calories and burn them. But fatty food will move through the guts more quickly. Will he be able to take his meds at regular intervals?

Typically UCers stay on meds ALL OF THE TIME. These are called maintenance meds and are used to keep the UC from progressing and to try to keep a person in remission. It doesn't always work ideally. The maintenance meds are usually the 5ASA meds - Asacol, Colazal, Lialda, Pentasa.

Sometimes you can feel a flare coming on. Sometimes it just comes and slaps you in the face - no warning what-so-ever.

Things he might be able to do to help if he flares while out fishing: Talk to his doc and have prednisone on hand at all times. That way if he flares, he would be able to start this fast acting (yet possibly evil med) right away in hopes of calming things down. Maybe the extra pred energy would even help?!!? He and his doc may be able to come up with other alternatives as well.

Hope this helps a tiny bit.

BTW - Welcome to HealingWell! I'm sorry that your husband has been so sick with this darn disease (DD for short).
Pan-colitis and GERD diagnosed May 2003
Osteopenia diagnosed Feb 2006
Status:  Flaring
Asacol 12 per day,  Azathioprine 100mg, Aciphex, Forvia, and Pro-Bio
Last dose of pred: May 25
Co-Mod for the UC forum:  Keep HealingWell running smoothly:

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5698
   Posted 6/6/2008 6:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Your husband has experienced about the worse that ulcerative colitis will provide and since this disease is new to the two of you I want to give you hope that he will be able to resume his life as a fisherman. Once the disease is controlled and he is on a regime of maintenance medications he should be able to return to his job. Most UCers are able to manage their disease in the workplace and will have periodic minor flares that they can control by raising their maintence medications. Having UC should not mean one has to permanently change their lifestyle. It seems that a lot of UCers experience their worst flare as their first flare. I will keep your husband in my thoughts and hope that this too is the worst of the UC experience that he will ever have.

dx proctitis in 1987
dx UC in 1991, was stable until 1998

1998 started prednisone, asacol, pentasa, nortriptylene, ativan, 6MP, rowasa enemas and suppositories, hydrocortisone enemas, tried the SCD diet, being a vegetarian, omega 3s, flax, pranic healing, yoga, acupuncture, probiotics

2000 lost all my B-12 stores and became anemic

2001 opted for j-pouch surgery- now living life med-free

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