High Altitudes Tied to Colitis/Crohn's Flare Ups

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Date Joined Sep 2011
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   Posted 5/30/2012 7:32 PM (GMT -7)   

Although the study published is only in preliminary stage, its still interesting to find this statement of some value:

Somebody said...
In high altitudes, lower oxygen content in the air means that people may not get all the oxygen their bodies are used to getting. Oxygen depletion in any tissue (hypoxia) causes inflammation, but there are little available data about how hypoxia might exacerbate inflammatory bowel disease.

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   Posted 5/30/2012 8:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Wouldn't vigorous exercise induce temporary hypoxia too? i swear I do better the more that I exercise (I generally alternate weught machine training and cardio workouts)... But maybe its the oxygenating effect, and/or the reduction in stress related hormones.
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Date Joined Aug 2010
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   Posted 5/31/2012 12:36 PM (GMT -7)   
I live in Guatemala, where there is a very low incidence of UC. It was believed due to the ethnic make up of the people (very few WAS). However, there has suddenly been incidences of UC in the Guatemalan Indian population, which had been unheard of before. It's occurring in the population that lives in high altitudes. This is why your post caught my eye. Interesting.

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   Posted 5/31/2012 1:35 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't know, the theory seems a little on the weak side to me, just cuz if that was the case then why wouldn't more people living in high altitudes have and IBD and why would those living in low altitudes also have an IBD...maybe it's linked in the form of being a trigger for those that are predisposed to getting an IBD...I wish they knew a lot more about IBD than they do, it's very frustrating.
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Old Hat
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   Posted 6/1/2012 9:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Yup, my dentist told me about a patient of his with Crohn's who got violently sick while changing planes in Denver. She could not board her connecting flight & had to be rushed to hospital. / Old Hat (31 yrs with left-sided UC; presently in remission taking brandname Colazal)

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   Posted 6/2/2012 5:22 AM (GMT -7)   
I am not sure about people living in high altitude but I know if someone with an IBD that travels from a low altitude state to a higher one, the incidence of flaring is greater. I'm proof of that! I live in MI and a few years ago traveled to Flagstaff, Arizona - stayed near Humphrey's Peak. I was fairly stable with my Uc but when I got to AZ, not only did I have a major stuffy and somewhat bloody nose (my family had the same) but I started bleeding pretty good from the tush as well. When that happened I asked on here if anyone else had that and it seemed to be pretty common.
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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2011
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   Posted 6/2/2012 8:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow! There must be something to it, everytime I fly and go hiking in the mountains my UC seems to flare...very interesting!
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Date Joined Jun 2010
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   Posted 6/2/2012 10:39 AM (GMT -7)   
I work in Denver the mile high city and live near Boulder. I grew up in Chicago but did not get UC until I came out for a few years. However nobody I have ever told about UC has even heard of it out here so I do not get the notion its related to the altitude. After my last flare resulted in a stroke ( sagittal sinus thrombosis ) I went skiing at 11,000 feet when I got off the blood thinner with a large group and led the way into the moguls all day long. I had perfect poop. I experienced no flare up. I have never flared on any ski trip.

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Date Joined Aug 2011
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   Posted 6/2/2012 11:14 AM (GMT -7)   
I live at sea level...

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2011
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   Posted 6/2/2012 7:59 PM (GMT -7)   
I believe thats what the article was touching base on, how going from altitude to another can cause an oxygen imbalance, resulting in flares. This probably doesn't help, but after I stopped smoking my UC developed, while I was living down south...

It does make sense to me though, if the body tissue does not get enough oxygen, it can cause inflammation. Maybe this is where the environmental factors come into play? ... Could be that 'Asian Brown Cloud' I learned about a month ago in Geography 101! ;)
College Senior, diagnosed severe Chrons/UC - Sept. 2011

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