A Question for Smokers

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Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/2/2008 4:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I came down w/ UC because I quit smoking.  For those of you that found yourself in my shoes and went back to smoking how long did it take before you felt better?  Did going back to smoking help put you into remission? 
 
Your response is appreciated.
 
Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


jw78
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 11/2/2008 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I find it hard to believe that you came "down" with UC because you quit smoking!  Quittting probably caused a flare!  Have you thought using your nicotene patch again?

jujub
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 11/2/2008 6:53 PM (GMT -6)   
There is a negative correlation between smoking and UC; that is, people who smoke are less likely to have UC (but more likely to have Crohn's). Given that there seems to be a genetic predisposition but a trigger is required for UC to develop, this make sense. Therefore, it's quite possible that you did develop UC because you quit smoking. Of course, if you had kept smoking you might have developed UC because of a course of antibiotics, an infection or just plain stress in your life.

Also, unfair as it is, there's no assurance that starting smoking again will relieve your symptoms. It works for some people, but others just end up with both UC and emphysema.
Judy
 
Moderate to severe left-sided UC (21 cm) diagnosed 2001.
Avascular necrosis in both shoulders is my "forever" gift from Entocort.
Colazal,  Remicade, Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri. In remission since April, 2006.
"My life is an ongoing medical adventure"
 
Co-Moderator UC Forum
Please remember to consult your health care provider when making health-related decisions.


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/2/2008 7:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I have used the nico patch and it helped to a degree. As my doctor stated, I already had the "bad bacteria" when I was smoking. However, smoking had it "paralyzed" if you will. When I quit smoking it woke that bad bacteria up thus the flare. Perhaps this will help you understand as well:

This comes from: http://ibdcrohns.about.com/cs/ibdfaqs/a/smokingguts.htm

What is the connection between ulcerative colitis and smoking?

Ulcerative colitis appears to be a disease of non-smokers. Former smokers are at the highest risk for developing ulcerative colitis, while current smokers have the least risk. This tendency indicates that smoking cigarettes helps prevent the onset of ulcerative colitis.

Researchers have discovered that it is the nicotine in tobacco cigarettes that has a positive influence on symptoms of ulcerative colitis. Nicotine is a naturally occurring substance in tobacco that has a complex effect on many organs and systems in the body. Nicotine is also highly addictive, and many people who smoke cigarettes have difficulty quitting despite the serious health risks.

It is theorized that the nicotine in cigarettes affects the smooth muscle inside the colon. This affect may alter gut motility, which is the rate at which waste moves through the colon.

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 11/2/2008 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Actually from my knowledge, often people that quit smoking do in fact get UC, but only if they are predisoposed to getting UC in the first place because obviously not every single person that quits gets UC...the reason being is that smoking, because of the carbon monoxide keeping inflammation in the colon at bay is why often for some that are predisposed to getting UC quit smoking, it brings the UC out so to speak.

Smoking however for those that are predisposed to getting crohn's is an actual known trigger including second-hand smoke. However, not everything is written in stone, many UCers that don't quit smoking can still end up getting sick with UC and many smokers with CD do not always take a turn for the worse, nor is it a guaranteed trigger for all crohnies.

As a crohnie with crohn's colitis specifically, I can tell you from my own experiance that when I quit smoking for 3 yrs, it was 3 yrs of total hell, starting again definitely helped with my symptoms but to get where I am now it took a lot more then just starting to smoke again.

Everyone is different...but don't expect that starting smoking again will necessarily put you into remission either because with IBD nothing is cut and dried.

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


Joylu
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 362
   Posted 11/2/2008 9:34 PM (GMT -6)   
My doctor directly blamed my quitting smoking on my UC. He said it's very common.

pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 11/3/2008 1:38 AM (GMT -6)   
You know the funny thing is, back 17 yrs ago when I first got sick with my crohn's and it was affecting my anus, rectom, colon and ileum, my colon and rectom specialist/surgeon told me then not to quit smoking because it was already suspected back then that something about smoking seemed to aid with inflammation in the colon...I should have never forgotten that he told me that when I decided to quit for those 3 yrs....at least I was able to find out for sure that in my particular case he was right...even though smoking is suppose to have a negative effect for crohnies, clearly not every situation is the same.

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


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/3/2008 7:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you for your responses - now I have my decision to make.

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


lil-momma
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 132
   Posted 11/3/2008 9:53 AM (GMT -6)   
This post is quite interesting to say the least and has certainly got me thinking. I never associated smoking with my symptoms. When I was first diagnosed, I had quit smoking for 8 months and started again within a few months of starting smoking again is when my problems started. When I was pregnant I quit smoking and my symptoms seemed to have disappeared, which I thought was related to pregnancy. My Dr. told me that wasn't uncommon for IBD to disappear during pregnancy. I quit for 2 yrs and started smoking again 9 months ago and I have been having problems since but associated that with stress due to my daughter's health problems with crohn's. So I wonder if smoking causes me problems or just a coincidence? Call me selfish but I'm not ready to quit right now to find out. Hopefully soon though, then I will know if it is part of my problem. But I thought smoking causes problems with crohn's not uc?
32 yr old Dx w/UC in 2001 - some what controlled by diet. I take multi-vitamins & probiotics.
Mother to 16 yr old daughter dx w/CD 9/07- she had surgery for abscesses 11/07, ileocolectomy/resection 10/08. She is taking multi-vit, iron for anemia, probiotics, bentyl prn, prilosec 20mg-x2, 6 mp 50mg-x3


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 11/3/2008 1:38 PM (GMT -6)   
The general rule of thumb is that smoking can aid UC but hurt CD, as I said not everything is written in stone, it's still a very individualistic disease, so although the majority of CDers may have issues with smoking/second-hand smoke, realisticly it won't for every CDer, same with the positive effects of it for UCers.

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


potato
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 281
   Posted 11/3/2008 2:24 PM (GMT -6)   
From what I've read, PB's explanation re: the carbon monoxide is accurate.
 
Why not try nicotine gum instead of the patch?  That way you can control how much nic you're getting.
 
If your decision is to start smoking again, hopefully you won't become a smoker with UC and everything else smoking causes 
 
potato
quit smoking in 2001 after 33 years and proud of it
Potato...  Female, 58, dx 11/07 mild left sided ulcerative colitis (50 cm)
asacol 3 3x a day, cortenema (generic) every other night rowasa
culturelle, benefiber wafers metamucil wafers, activia yogurt, spinach & sunflower diet, primadophilus reuteri
children's vitamin, Vitamin E 400 mg, omeprazole 2xday
oxazepam when needed, lomotil or ImodiumAD when needed
Yoga, meditation, The Work by Byron Katie, exercise at least 5 days a week
 


ediekristen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1366
   Posted 11/3/2008 2:28 PM (GMT -6)   
I quit smoking once and flared horribly.. When I started again, I went into a short remission within a month. I quit smoking again maybe a year later and flared again and I've since started back up and have not gotten better this time. In face I'm just getting worse :(

Female, 23, Ulcerative colitis (pancolitis) since 1999; GERD; gastritis; osteopenia in femur head & lumbar spine from long term prednisone use...

Current Meds:
Lexapro 10mg, Sulfasalizine 3000mg/day, Azasan 100mg

 
 


kazygirl
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 955
   Posted 11/4/2008 4:48 AM (GMT -6)   
i quit smoking, got my first super bad flare.
then i flared again in may and started having about 1-4 cigarettes a day and i went back into remission.
then in oct, my grandma died, stress caused another bad flare, which im in right now and im smoking again 1-4 cigs a day.
and it is helping id say.
i think it is. and that is all that matters right. i seem to be getting better.
and if i go a day or 2 without cigs, it seems to get worse.
so i dont know.. im gonna keep going with my few a day and see what happens.
steph - 32 - female - gold coast australia - UC since 2000
severe UC in descending colon and sigmoid colon ONLY
mesalazine granules 3g x1 a day (much nicer than a million tablets a day)
prednisolone 25mg x1 a day (ick ick and did i say ick?)
enteric coated fish oil -omega 3 (so they get all the way to my colon)
vitamin D3 x1 a day
tumeric capsules - if i remember to take the bloody things.
i still eat what i want, when i want, if i feel like eating at all :(
 
 
 


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/4/2008 7:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Kazygirl thank you for your response as well as everyone else. However, I wanted to give you my condolences w/ the death of your grandmother.

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


cheeky22
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 11/4/2008 4:09 PM (GMT -6)   
 
I was diagnosed with UC in May 2007 and I had quit smoking just before that but was using the nicotine patch.  May DR said that the quitting smoking triggered the UC.  I started smoking again and things got better...although I wouldnt completely say that the smoking fixed everything as I was taking a lot of meds too.
I quite smoking a couple times during the last 1.5 and when I do I tend to start feeling miserable, bowel movements increase, urgency is back so I tend to return to smoking before a complete flare comes on.  Like I said I dont know if smoking is actually keeping the UC under control as I still am on meds, and I dont feel completely like my old self, but I think in my mind it helps me.
I started Remicade (5th infusion next week) and have managed to get off of all my other meds so hoping that if the Remicade continues to work I will be able to quit smoking for good.

marty1976
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 2045
   Posted 11/4/2008 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
After quitting the cigs a month ago i started flaring quite badly.Two weeks ago i gave up and started smoking again i noticed an improvement within a few days. But i decided at the weekend to try and do it again.I quit again on Saturday and up until a few hours ago i didn't feel too bad.I'm having a few cramps but i'm unsure if these are related as i'm still flaring a little bit.
I will let you all know how this goes. I had more bad news at the weekend, another person i know disgnosed with lung cancer. So that was the catalyst for me trying again.I had four family members die in this past two years due to lung cancer directly caused by smoking.
This mightn't be an ideal time to quit as i am already flaring but i'm giving it a serious go.

Marty


  



       
 


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 11/4/2008 7:52 PM (GMT -6)   
I smoke 6 cigs a day, and that amount works for me and is no worse then standing on the street waiting for the light to change as far as poisons and polutions go...in my opinion for myself, it's worth smoking 6/day if it's helping with my crohn's colitis.

Besides, I work out regularly and eat extreamly healthy, no junk food, sugar, processed garbage, so 6/day is the worst I'm doing to myself I can live with that until I die, which I will one day whether I smoke 6/day or not.

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


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/4/2008 9:15 PM (GMT -6)   
pb4 I have just about made the decision to smoke 5 per day - in fact I just told my husband. He wasn't pleased, but I am tired of not feeling well. I think after 6 months of this it is time I try going back to smoking to see if it helps. If it doesn't work for me, then I'll quit again, but I don't think smoking 5 cigs a day is going to kill me tomorrow.

Marty, I am sorry for the loses of your family members to Lung Cancer. I am fortunate in that my parents are 77 and 81 and have smoked all their lives - for their age their health is good. Some can smoke all their lives and be fine others can't. But I just want you to know my heart is with you.

For all who responded to this t hread I thank you and would love to hear if it helps you or not. I in turn will keep you informed from my end.

I will start smoking again tomorrow for a month to see what happens. It was a tough decision for me to make, but I am ready to take the chance. If it puts me in remission then it is worth it.

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


madabs
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 388
   Posted 11/5/2008 12:09 PM (GMT -6)   
I had a different experience with smoking and uc.  I quit three months after I was diagnosed and it did not make me worse.  In fact, I was completely surprised to find that many people found smoking helped their UC because whenever I used to light up - it caused me to cramp and have to rush to the bathroom usually before I could even finish the cig.
 
I guess there always must be exceptions to the rule.  Too bad, because somedays I would love to have an excuse to start back up again.
UC diagnosed 10/05, first symptoms 1983
asacol 12/daily and rowasa as needed 
Trying out Culturelle Probiotic
past rx: colozal, lialda, canasa
i can't complain, but sometimes i still do.  lifes been good to me so far.  -joe walsh


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/5/2008 1:52 PM (GMT -6)   
I did make the decision to start smoking again. I decided I would smoke 3 cigarettes a day for a month to see if this helps w/ my UC. If it does than so be it. If it doesn't then I know I have the strength to quit smoking again. I had never tried to quit before this quit and it lasted 239 days. I know I didn't go back to smoking because I was "craving" a cigarette it was simply for medicinal purposes. I must say I have had 2 today and omg they tasted terrible - how did I smoke for 26 years?!

Anyway, we'll see what happens.

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


Gigi1227
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 11/5/2008 1:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Typo I smoked 36 years! And my forum for quitting smoking is highly upset w/ me for starting back. I asked their administration to pull me from their site. I do understand their frustrations w/ me, but then the majority of them do not understand what it's like to live w/ UC either. Life goes on and Life is good!

Gigi1227
Diagnosised 8/25/08 GRRR
Started flare mid-May/feeling better but still flaring
 
Canasa 2x a day
Asacol
Multi Enzyme
Mega Probiotic
Psyllium
Fiber Wafer
Nictotine Patch
Fish Oil Pill
Multi Vitamin
B12
 
 


Mitzo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 536
   Posted 11/6/2008 7:14 AM (GMT -6)   
The overwhelming obsession our society seems to have with demonizing smoking makes victims of some of us. Interesting how people are actually derided or pressured not to smoke even if it eases the symptoms of UC. Shows how far gone we are ... and how effective antismoking propaganda has been.

21 years of UC which started after quitting smoking. In and out of flares which are usually triggered by antibiotics. Latest issue is endless diarrhea without blood or mucous.

 

  • 2 500mg Pentasa a day
  • Psyllium powder
  • Culturelle probiotic


taljones
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 12/12/2008 2:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Gigi!

I was wondering how your UC responded to the cigarrette smoking? Did it improve at all?

I am considering doing the same thing. I used to smoke from the age of 15 - 22. I quit for 8 years, then was diagnosed with UC
last year in Dec 07. I too have thought about smoking a few throughout the day and see how my body responds.
I tried the patch, but it made me feel nauscious and I had heart palpitations. I would prefer to start slowly with the cig's and then increase gradually to about 5-6 a day and see if there is any improvement.

I guess I would be slightly concerned about possibly triggering Crohn's or something else. But if it works, it would be great!
Let us know how it's coming along for you!
Male, 31 years old. Daignosed with UC in Dec 2007.
Had remission with Salofalk for 5 months, then began to flare
and switched to Lialda, which did not work.
Recently hospitalized.
Now on 40 mg of Prednisone and 175 mg of Imuran


Limeycricketlover
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 67
   Posted 12/12/2008 3:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Gigi,

I flared badly, badly, badly (and for the first time) after quitting smoking. Managed to stay off the cigs for quite a while, but caved in about 4 weeks ago. Have noticed absolutely no improvement whatsoever in the symptoms since starting again, and will now have to go through the fun of stopping again. Unfortunately, I get side effects from patches, so will have to stick to the gum and lozenge nicotine to help me. D'oh - what a fool! Have to say, I'm a lot less stressed generally, though. he he.
UC - diagnosed Sep 2008 - Not seen GI since then...
Omeprazole 2 x 20mg
Prednisolone 20mg
Calcium (Adcal-D3) 3000mg
Mesalazine 8 x 500mg
Mesalazine foam enema
Multivitamins x 2
Omega 3
Probiotic (acidophilus)
Ferrous Sulphate 3 x 200mg

Unable to tolerate Paracetamol

Foods for me to avoid:
Any types of green leaf - big time.


ediekristen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1366
   Posted 12/12/2008 3:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Does anyone else notice that smoking a cigarette actually makes them have to go to the bathroom? It used to have the complete opposite effect on me and I would smoke when my stomach really hurt and it would make me feel better, but lately when I'm halfway through a cigarette I have to put it out and run for the toilet. At least there's one good thing- I'm smoking less because I rarely finish one! Hah

Female, 23, Ulcerative colitis (pancolitis) since 1999; GERD; gastritis; osteopenia in femur head & lumbar spine from long term prednisone use...

Current Meds:
Lexapro 10mg, Azasan 100mg

 
 

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