Article: "Depression, anxiety increase with inflammatory bowel disease"

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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 182
   Posted 11/21/2008 2:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Interesting article. I was speaking to a Dr. who said that alot of recent research has shown there to be a brain-gut connection. That when something is affecting the stomach/gut, the brain is affected too...I mean, all systems are connected.......................................
Just saw this...

What do you think?

Dx: Dec. 2006 with UC
F, 23, NYC
Thank G-d - Prednisone then 6MP, Rowasa and Asacol brought remission
Now Asacol 4tabs 2x a day.
Reduced to 2tabs 2x a day. Soon had a very mild flare. Upped to 6 tabs 2x a day. Rowasa enemas nightly. Soon replacing that with Cortifoam (generic). Dr. says it's like shooting a mouse with an elephant gun....
Muiltivitamin, Iron and Folic Acid supplements

Post Edited (:)) : 11/21/2008 1:26:39 AM (GMT-7)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 2832
   Posted 11/21/2008 3:09 AM (GMT -6)   
Active IBD is so unpleasant in terms of quality of life, that I think discovering this association belongs in the "duuuuh" category. Granted, there is a brain-gut connection, but when it comes to IBD and anxiety/depression, I think i t is mostly gut problems causing the anxity/depression and noit the other way around.
Pancolitis 20 years ago, full med-free remission 10 years,
Flaring/simmering on and off ever since, allergic to all 5ASAs
10 20 17.5 15 12.5 10 mg 8 7.5 20 17.5 mg pred, 100 mg Imuran
TCM, Probiotics (Primal Defense and others), DMSO, TSO, hookworm
Turmeric/circuminboswellia, fish oil, many vits/minerals
Lower-carb version of Specific Carb Diet (SCD), Remicade newbie

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 460
   Posted 11/21/2008 8:34 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree with Probiotic, I don't have anxiety over anything in life besides UC! When I'm not flaring, I don't have any anxiety period. When I'm flaring, I'm a nervous wreck to leave the house. I've had times where as soon as I get out of my driveway, I have to go to the bathroom because I'm so nervous. It would happen EVERY time I left the house. Certain stores I go into, it's guaranteed that I will have to go to the bathroom because I start psyching myself out when I get there. The feeling of anxiety sucks and is very debilitating!
Female, Age 37
Diagnosed w/c.diff 7/02 when pregnant w/1st and only child during 2nd trimester(wasn't on antibiotics)
C.diff flare within weeks of delivering baby 1/03
Diagnosed with UC 2/03
Current Meds:
75mg 6-MP
Cortenema as needed
Ferrex Forte
Sacchromyces Boulardii 

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 11/21/2008 8:42 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree that there is a brain/gut connection but I have to disagree with you, Probiotic, that it only works one way.  Anxiety can cause so many physical symptoms and stomach problems are one of the worst and longest-lasting of many anxiety problems.  
When I was in a bad flare last spring, before I was diagnosed with UC and therefore had no benefit of any medications, out of desparation (and on the recommendation of my anxiety counsellor) I took some time off work every day and started a program of deep relaxation every morning.  It didn't totally put me into remission but there was noticable improvement every day.  The bleeding and D stopped and after a week I was able to go back to work full time. 
I don't believe tht anxiety would cause UC, but I do believe, at least in my case, there was definately a connection in stress and flaring.

45, female
Diagnosed September 2008
Asocol (2 - 3 times / day)

Old Hat
Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 5190
   Posted 11/21/2008 12:39 PM (GMT -6)   
Reuters Health loves to put out these articles periodically as if they're a breakthrough notion. Stress does not help anyone's health overtime, and the prospect of pooping one's pants in public after age 3-4 is definitely anxiety-inducing, plus not being understood when one feels weak & miserable & RX meds either don't help or take months to work is very conducive to depression. Nothing new about any of this, they just repackage the same arguments every so often. / Old Hat (nearly 30 yrs with left-sided UC; currently on 3 generic Colazal for maintenance of remission)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 1766
   Posted 11/21/2008 4:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm with Probiotic--this falls into the "duh" category. There's nothing exciting and fun about having a pooping disease. However, it would be really interesting to see if depression/anxiety could be an enviornmental trigger for IBD (that's what I think my trigger was).
Female, Age 20
9 Asacol, Rowasa, 1000 mg Canasa, Proctofoam, Rifaximin 2/day
Digestive Advantage (Crohn's & Colitis)1 Florastor, 50 mg 6MP,1 Primadophilus reuteri, Remicade (4 infusions), 2.4 g Lialda, 1 Forvia, 6 Colazal/day, 1 Anucort, Culturelle, Fish Oil, Calcium/Vit D supplement

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 11/21/2008 8:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Sure we get depressed and anxious with this DD, but let me tell you, I had a genetic dispositon towards UC--GI problems run in my family.
However, I'm sure 35 years of living with a verbal abuser and a fairly disfunctional family had a lot to do with finally flaring with the real thing.  I turned my anxiety and misery inward and it literally ate up my own gut.  At least that's the way it seems to me.  And every flare has been proceeded by some mental trauma--for instance, a really bad one a month after weathering Hurricane Katrina.  Maybe once your brain and gut learn to deal with problems in this way it becomes habit-forming.
Well, maybe I'm full of baloney--we're all different I know--but I'm sure I carry a lot of grief and baggage around and it eventually gets to my gut.
Since I'm only 70, maybe I'll grow up someday and get my head straight!!lol idea
Moderate to severe left-sided UC, Dx 1991
Lialda 2 per day
Prednisone for flares. SCD recipe yogurt daily for probiotics.
Fish oil caps and Multivitamin and Bee Pollen
Prima. Reuteri. L Glutamine, and iron supplement
Started Remicade infusions 11/06/08

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 11/22/2008 1:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Interesting article. I've never understood those doctors who say that stress/anxiety doesn't affect or play a part in one's UC.

Let's see, is it any coincidence that I first got UC the summer going off to college and looking back at all the fear, anxiety, and concerns I had? That the worst flare I've ever had was 6 weeks postpartum right after my newborn DD started having health issues. I was beside myself about my DD and my UC spiraled out of control that I didn't know it was capable of doing. Here I am pregnant again today. I SAILED through my first trimester taking my 6MP and Colazal finding it ironic that I felt better pregnant during my entire first trimester than I had in two years since my flare after DD. Now, I'm in my second trimester when supposedly UC gets even better in pregnancy, but for me I'm starting to have some UC symptoms. Is it a coincidence that my second trimester started at the end of September when the financial markets started to tank. I work in the financial industry and have never experienced stress from my job like the stress I have endured the past two months and have noticed my UC starting to flare again. So for me, I don't care what any research or doctor says, but when there are stressful events in my life it does affect my UC and health. What I'm working on is recognizing the stress before it gets out of control and finding ways to alleviate it.
Diagnosed UC - 1993
32 year old female

Current Meds:
6-MP - 50 mg one night 75 Mgs the next
Colazal (3 pills three times a day)
Folic Acid

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 365
   Posted 11/22/2008 11:14 AM (GMT -6)   
I think its a catch 22....endless loop of one feeding off the other.... great thread.

glamourgirl - same probs here with the mental aspect of leaving the house....i will sit on the toilet for 30 minutes before i leave, but as soon as i hit the road, instantly have to poop again.... also - many stores conjure up a poop for me too....lowes...dont know why...also stores where i know the bathroom is nasty....i think my uc has a sense of humor....and its not funny....
33 yr old male. UC for 14 years. 5mg pred (tapering off), 12 pills Asacol per day, Dicyclomine (for cramps), 0.5 - 1mg Atavan per day (anxiety) when needed, Fish oil pills, Culturelle probiotics. Recent Endonasal brain surgery to remove non-cancerous hormone producing tumor on pituitary gland (And I am still more afraid of my UC!!)  "I poop in the woods because I can"

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 182
   Posted 11/23/2008 1:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks guys for your opinions - these are the REAL insider experiences...

Mbx5 - I laughed where you write, "My UC has a sense of humor....and it's not funny."
I think we can all relate.....
Dx: Dec. 2006 with UC
F, 23, NYC
Thank G-d - Prednisone then 6MP, Rowasa and Asacol brought remission
Now Asacol 4tabs 2x a day.
Reduced to 2tabs 2x a day. Soon had a very mild flare. Upped to 6 tabs 2x a day. Rowasa enemas nightly. Soon replacing that with Cortifoam (generic). Dr. says it's like shooting a mouse with an elephant gun....
Muiltivitamin, Iron and Folic Acid supplements

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