Let me attempt a concise yet thorough history.
Smoker from age 16-28. Quit, started running, marathons etc
Acquire excellent fitness until age 36, hit with UC hard after a cycling trip. Diagnosed in Dec 1999. Sick as a dog for the first few years. Started Asacol, Big Pred dose for awhile, tapered.
Attempted SCD diet, some? success...not enough to continue SCD.
Tried identifying certain foods that triggered flares, not much success.
Started on a Probiotic that made a difference almost immediately, continued for a couple years. Throughout this period I would have a mild flare about
once per year. Doc would prescribe Pred taper and I would be fine again, this cycle continues...
6 years ago I started my own research, via ex smokers with UC...decided to give smoking a try again, even though I did not want to, had no desire to smoke, but was tired of UC symptoms. Noticed a positive change in UC symptoms immediately. Continued to smoke, in increasing frequency up until Feb 23 2014. Haven't smoked since. This recent flare started 55 days after quitting. Admittedly I did flare at times, maybe once per year mildly even while smoking. This present flare is worse than I have had in a long time. Presently I VAPE, ecig, just vapor but contains some nicotine. Some research suggests nicotine as anti inflammatory, some suggests CO levels as a bi product so smoking, at low levels that is obtained from smoking to be therapeutic for inflammation related to smoking. I am in the camp of believing that the CO levels are the key, not the nicotine, at least in my experience.
I take Lialda 2.4g 2 times daily...or at least I am supposed to.
From my experience I have pretty much arrived at the belief that, diet, Asacol/Lialda really do not make a difference. I think I flare when I flare and that is all I know. Prednisone is the only medication that I see real results with, along with cigarettes and the probiotic (maybe) that I used to take.
I have had several times over this 14 year UC curse where I could have EASILY went to ER for pain control, but never have. I have gone to work, worked through severe pain and sickness that would have sent many many people over the edge. Now, I understand that that idea is not recommended, I could be close to inflammation at a level where I could perhaps perf my bowel, but I just keep pushing on, as I must go to work and provide for my family etc...on my days off I lay around the house, feeling sick, and try to rest and stay warm...
So I hope I have been clear...this is the point that I am at. I can't stand the thought of not smoking if that will help me keep my colon, and I can't stand the thought of ruining my lungs to save my colon. I hate this disease so much. I struggle with (self diagnosed) severe depression and mood swings due to UC symptoms....
Thanks for letting me air out my struggle. I know we all go through like struggles. I don't want to spend my entire day preparing foods, thinking about
foods, thinking about
bathrooms, spending large amounts of money on probiotics, supplements etc...maybe because I don't really see an increase in quality of life with my experience, or others experiences...perhaps I'm wrong...
Thanks for listening and being willing to help
Dx of UC in Dec 1999
in a 99% remission state (whatever that is) for almost 5 years now
Lialda 2 times daily (when I'm cooperating)50 yrs old
Tried to control diet, now I just do whatever I please, I am convinced that stress and its effects are a HUGE factor...
I wish UC was a person, I would beat him unmercifully!!!!!!!!!!!!!!