Trying to stop a flare in the first weeks

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julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 4/25/2009 12:51 PM (GMT -6)   
I knew it was too good to be true. After 6 fantastic months of remission, I'm starting to flare again. Can't see that there's any reason why; nothing has changed in terms of my habits. But that's just the way it is, I guess.

So, it's been two weeks or so and I'm desperate to get this under control quickly. So far no blood, just D 1-2 times a day. Here's what I'm doing... or planning to do as of today:

1) increased my dose of Lialda (my doctor's rec)
2) already started Cortifoam 2 x a day (my doctor said cortenema every other day, which I'll try)
3) keeping up with my exercise
4) getting a lot of sleep
5) starting taking Lomotil again
6) sticking with the foods that I've had good luck with in the past

I suppose I could start something I've never tried before, like tumeric or aloe vera juice, but I'm not sure I want to try something new in case it makes me worse.

I hope that just by saying all this "out loud" here, I'm committing myself to a good regimen and it will have some extra good effect.

Any other ideas about how to stop this before it gets bad?

Thanks.
Julee
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UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP since 2006, Lialda, Asacol foam, Lomotil
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it. (Asacol, Colazol, Pentasa, DiPentum, Rowasa, Canasa, Cortenema, sulfasalazine, Cortifoam)
Alternative treatments I have had success with: Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy


Old Hat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 5191
   Posted 4/25/2009 1:20 PM (GMT -6)   
As you wrote, that's just the way UC is. After a terrifically positive beginning to March, with fond hopes for the long-awaited spring, I started into a flare which quickly ulcerated my sigmoid colon. I was already on my maintenance dose of Colazal-- so immediately upped that + started (generic) Rowasa. Well, the latter made my flare worse! That from med which had always helped me get to remission over ca. 14 yrs. It's scary! My gastro would have added Xifaxin except that (thankfully) the higher dose of Colazal started working about a week after my flex-sig. So here I am 5 weeks later with ulceration apparently healed, but still watching diet carefully because that seems very necessary. I need to beware of ingredients + amount of food consumed overall. I lost ca. 6 lbs but could afford it. You're definitely doing the best that can be done in our precarious situation. Try to stay positive & avoid stressing out over what might go wrong-- because we just can't control everything. Good luck & let us know how you're doing. / Old Hat (30 yrs with left-sided UC; presently recovering from March flare in sigmoid colon)

julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 4/27/2009 9:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Old Hat, Thanks for the encouragement.
So far, so good. Saturday was bad until the afternoon but I've been on a tiny upswing since then. The flare is not getting worse at least! I'm being pretty good about following my plan (above) and that makes me feel like I'm doing all I can.

I decided to cut back on sugar and anything with preservatives. Also drinking ginger tea, which I find comforting. I've been exercising lightly throughout the day in small increments. And I made myself use the cortenema as my doctor told me. I'm just trying to get myself up to using it again tonight. Ugh, I hate it but I know it works.

Ok, so that's my little story. Just wanted to say that I feel like I might actually stop this flare.
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UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP since 2006, Lialda, Asacol foam, Lomotil
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it. (Asacol, Colazol, Pentasa, DiPentum, Rowasa, Canasa, Cortenema, sulfasalazine, Cortifoam)
Alternative treatments I have had success with: Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy


jeanneac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 1916
   Posted 4/27/2009 9:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Good luck julee 70, it sounds like you are on the right track. I think the more experience you have with this stuff, the better you get. I have such a problem with determining which foods cause me to flare. There are some I do not touch like pizza, and other Italian/Greek food with red sauce. Also, can't do raw veggies, popcorn, corn, seeds or nuts ever. EVen corn products bother me like corn chips. I am unsure about tea, and dairy. Sometimes I think these bother me but other times no. I think I have a slight case of lactose intolerance. It also seems that when I do not get my rest, things will flare up. I am not sure of the cause/effect there. Thanks for the info on the cortifoam bs. rowasa.
diagnosed 1/09 with colitis,54 yo, colazal, fish oil, synthroid, cymbalta


julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 5/2/2009 11:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi. Well, it's been a week since I posted this and I'm waaay better. Last Saturday was awful -- I was stuck inside on a beautiful day because I couldn't leave the bathroom and I felt weak and terrible. After a week of following my plan -- upping some medications, etc -- I'm definitely doing better and feel nearly normal again.

Anyway, just wanted to post to let people know -- maybe those who are new to this -- that there's some hope for getting things back under control once a flare starts. I really think the key is to jump right on it and not wait until you're bleeding and it's totally out of control. It helps to have a doctor you can call who will give you a plan over the phone. The assistant for my doctor was really, really nice about leaving me messages and making sure I knew what the doctor recommended and that I had all the prescriptions I needed.

I'm seeing improvement nearly every day and I'm going to use the weekend for extra rest, exercise, meditation, and good food.
-------
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP since 2006, Lialda, Asacol foam, Lomotil
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it. (Asacol, Colazol, Pentasa, DiPentum, Rowasa, Canasa, Cortenema, sulfasalazine, Cortifoam)
Alternative treatments I have had success with: Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy


Rio in Maryland
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 891
   Posted 5/2/2009 11:19 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree that it's good to try to get a flare under control asap, instead of waiting for symptoms to worsen. Julee, if you're still having D, you could try taking a fiber supplement to firm up the BM's. I find that taking a fiber supplement helps a lot.
Rio, 33 year old male. Diagnosed with UC in 2006
100 mg Azathioprine, 4800 mg Asacol
VSL#3 x 3 times a day, Metamucil wafers
Vitamin E enema or Mesacol/Asacol enema at least once a week
Spinach & sunflower seed diet


Peety
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2855
   Posted 5/2/2009 11:40 AM (GMT -6)   
Careful, I know I cannot handle fiber at all when I'm flaring.
I have to eat only what is easiest to digest as possible.
49 year old female attorney, diagnosed UC/pancolitis 1985, no surgery but much suffering. Asacol/5ASA 6x400 mg maintenance for 20+ years; used prednisone & Rowasa for flares. 
August 2008 sought care of naturopathic doctor. Food sensitivity test showed wheat/gluten, other intolerances; eliminated wheat/gluten from my diet. Probiotics (Ultimate Flora, 50 billion). 
Bad flare in March, used prednisone. Humira denied, started Remicade 4/12 and doing great~ 


Rio in Maryland
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 891
   Posted 5/2/2009 1:31 PM (GMT -6)   
You can get smooth fiber supplements that aren't rough on the intestine and serve the purpose. However, like any new thing, you should try smaller doses at first to see if you can handle it.
Rio, 33 year old male. Diagnosed with UC in 2006
100 mg Azathioprine, 4800 mg Asacol
VSL#3 x 3 times a day, Metamucil wafers
Vitamin E enema or Mesacol/Asacol enema at least once a week
Spinach & sunflower seed diet


julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 5/2/2009 3:15 PM (GMT -6)   
thanks, guys. For fiber, I've been eating sweet potatoes and cooked,fresh spinach. It really agrees with me and I feel that I'm getting a lot of good nutrients to give me energy.
-------
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP since 2006, Lialda, Asacol foam, Lomotil
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it. (Asacol, Colazol, Pentasa, DiPentum, Rowasa, Canasa, Cortenema, sulfasalazine, Cortifoam)
Alternative treatments I have had success with: Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy


Christine1946
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 5975
   Posted 5/2/2009 6:35 PM (GMT -6)   
     I finally learned that to ward off a flare if I feel one coming on, is to immediately start on the Cort enemas.  I take 6 Colazal a day and 50mgm one day and 25mgm the next of 6MP.  So far this has worked like a charm.  I eat anything I like but do stay away from highly spicy and fried foods, and, of course, crabcakes which threw me into two flares in the past.
62 yr old granny. South Jersey
Diagnosed with ulcerative proctitis in 1998 in hospital
Hospitalized (2nd time) in May 2008
Update 11/03/08...finally in remission!!  Hope I don't jinx myself.  Off the prednisone since 11/01/08...now see if I can stay off for longer than two weeks.  Other meds: 6MP (75 mgm), colazal (6 per day), Benicar and Toprol (high blood pressure meds), Probiotic (2 per day), fish oil capsule and multi-vitamin and calcium with vitamin D.


Old Hat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 5191
   Posted 5/2/2009 6:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Sweet potatoes/yams have been helpful for me, too. Glad you're feeling better, Julee! So am I (after mid-March flare), but I'm still being cautious about diet. My gastro (IBD subspecialist) mentioned a couple yrs back that we should be cautious for about 3 months after subduing a flare. I know I'm not ready for raw produce yet, except for avocados & bananas. I'm getting to hate bananas, though-- they can become pretty boring. / Old Hat (30 yrs with left-sided UC; presently recovering from March flare in sigmoid colon)
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