From the little I know, that's the question. My doc said there's some debate as to whether visible, bloody flare is the worst risk or if even microscopic flare carries the same risk, or what percentage of risk, etc.
You could try some of the alternatives folks here have tried... slippery elm (google it), probiotics, fiber have all helped me, though I've ended up with standard western meds in addition.
If you were given asacol a year ago, it would indicate you have some relationship with a doctor.... that would be your best bet, to take care of this so it doesn't escalate.
Good luck to you!
Age 53. Diagnosed UP 1983, Azulphidine
Diagnosed UC 1986 Prednisone almost 2 years
Asacol - 16 pills/day, cortenemas, Rowasa
Metamucil - 2 doses/day since '86, and psyllium seed powder
VSL#3DS, Multivitamin, Calcium and D, Flax Seed Oil
homemade yogurt each day
Ryzolt for arthritis pain
Son, 16, dx pancolitis 2007, in remission