Anxiety Disorder & UC

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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 3/7/2018 3:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey there,

I am at a crossroads where my doctor has given me the choice of Humira or Remicade. Currently on Imuran for 4 months and Lialda-- neither working to put me into remission.

I have pretty bad anxiety and have had it my whole life. I believe when I had my first flare-up (the point when I was diagnosed w/UC) it was when I was going through an extremely stressful time in my life, and flare-ups have subsequently occurred amidst stressful points in life as well.

Many GIs don't have real answers when it comes to the brain and UC-- all they say is "step up your meds, take these meds, meds meds"-- and I believe that treating anxiety could potentially help with treating UC. I just feel the GIs and the Psychs are not talking to each other and we need to put them in a room together.

My main questions are: Anyone have thoughts on anxiety as a major contribution to UC and/or have had success with psych therapy?


Forum Moderator

Date Joined Aug 2012
Total Posts : 13200
   Posted 3/8/2018 10:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Over the years, many have said that high-stress events lead up to their initial UC diagnosis, or a flare. Certainly prolonged stress on the body has a number of direct affects (hormonal and other chemical changes in our bodies) and indirect affects (we sleep worse, eat things we shouldn't, etc.) on us. It could be one of the many things that collectively cause a cascade into a flare.

It cannot hurt to try and reduce stressors and how you cope to stress in your life.

1.) If certain people and events cause you stress than try to mitigate or avoid them. We may choose to live more simply, work a job that's less stressful (no 60-hour a week jobs with endless stress and no reward), even move to a less stressful location (into the country away from the chaos of inter-city living).

2.) It's easy to say but harder to do, let things slide and laugh them off rather then stew and let them bother you. How we react to stress can play a big factor on us.

Find healthy outlets to de-stress. Go for a jog or do yoga in the park, go for a walk, dive into hobbies like reading/music and anything you enjoy. Consider mindfulness, meditation, and anything that relaxes you. There's no easy-button, it takes practice and dedication. A few things you can try at home:

Tips for coping with stress and anxieties:

Three Minute Mindfulness Meditation Video

Some of us do get counseling, see a therapist, and take anti-anxiety medications when things are just beyond what we can handle ourselves.
Moderator Ulcerative Colitis
, 39, UC Proctosigmoiditis
Rx: Remicade @5mgs/kg/6wks; daily 75mgs 6MP, 4.8g generic-Lialda, and rowasa

UC experience: wakeup with noisy bowels so no lingering in bed, soon after poop with discomfort/pain/mild-nausea, eat something, poop, get dressed, poop, leave in car and worry whole drive about more...

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 8358
   Posted 3/8/2018 11:07 AM (GMT -6)   
"I have pretty bad anxiety and have had it my whole life."

so have you been treated in the past or are you currently under treatment ?
dx'd with pancolitis 12/21/03
current supplements:vit D, vit K2, cal/mag - grain free/paleoish diet that includes 100% grass fed beef, raw goat milk, & local organic free range eggs, lots of all natural well water, exercise, sleep as much as possible & enjoy this great life that God has blessed me with !

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 3/8/2018 12:58 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks to both responses. Very helpful and insightful.

I've been treated a bit then just slid back into old habits. It's been years but I'm ready to go back and give it all I've got!

Again thanks for the tips and links smile

Tony Eric
New Member

Date Joined Mar 2018
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 3/13/2018 2:20 AM (GMT -6)   
Nice discussion going on Ulcerative colitis. Now it's a very well known disease. It is an Inflammatory bowel disease. It is a long-term condition refers to an inflammation of the inner lining of the colon and can be associated with diarrhea, abdominal pain, Weight loss, fever, anemia, bloating, and blood in the stool. Sometimes symptoms come on slowly and can range from mild to severe. Still, it's a serious disease that can cause some dangerous complications, especially if you don't get the right treatment. Complications may include mega colon, inflammation of the eye, joints, or liver, and colon cancer. The primary goal in treating ulcerative colitis is to help patients regulate their immune system better. While there is no known cure for this disease. Dietary changes, Several medications may improve symptoms. Removal of the colon and rectum by surgery can cure the disease if the disease is severe. Thanks.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 75
   Posted 3/13/2018 3:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I've struggled with anxiety my entire life. I've also had a 4 year bout of a painkiller addiction. I got sober in June of 2015 and it has a bad affect on your bowels. You're either constipated or have diarrhea. Once I got sober my bowel movements were all messed up but no urgency. It wasn't until a year and a half later is when I notice blood and soon after I was going 15 to 30 times a day. My bm were much more frequent at night which I believe was due to my insane night anxiety. There's alot of things that could play into it but it's so uncertain idk if I'll ever understand how or why I just accept it now but it's an interesting topic
Diagnosed with severe ulcerative colitis on March 7 2017.
26 years old
Everything failed and colon was not in good shape so I got J pouch step1 June 19, 2017 step 2 February 12th 2018

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 66
   Posted 3/13/2018 5:05 PM (GMT -6)   
I am definitely and anxious and self conscious person, I always worried a lot. I believe there is some connection with UC and anxiety, but it has to do with a combination of many different factors. I never had a "nervous gut" before my diagnosis, nor did I ever have an IBS issue. My first symptoms started a couple weeks after I quit smoking, I began working out intensely, started eating more, and had started a new job. I think it was the stress I put on body and a genetic predisposition. They don't know what causes UC , but it is some combination of environment, genetics, and an auto immune attack (bacteria/pathogen).
24 year old male
First symptoms after cessation of smoking Marijuana/Blunts for ~7 Years.
4-6BM a day, No blood, overall sick - Started smoking again - "Clean" Colonoscopy June 2017 showed non specific colitis. After 9 months of flaring, and start of bleeding, forced GI to repeat a scope.
Diagnosed - Feb/23/2018 - Pan-colitis moderate.

Currently on 40mg of Prep. 4 x 1.2g Lialda a day

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2018
Total Posts : 211
   Posted 3/16/2018 1:58 PM (GMT -6)   
I've had anxiety all of my life, essentially. I feel that it plays a factor in my symptoms. If I get really worked up just being in public and scared to not know where the closest bathroom is, I'll give myself a stomach ache. My bathroom urgencies decrease massively, just from being at home, because I have easy access to a bathroom and clean shorts... -_-
27 years old/Ulcerative Pancolitis/Diagnosed in December 2017/Admitted for a month and a half into hospital care due to extreme symptoms.

Treatments given:
Prednisone, Remicade, Tacrolimus, Valcyte, Blood Transfusion, Celebrex, Neurontin, Pantoprazole, Bentyl, Entyvio.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 3670
   Posted 3/16/2018 4:28 PM (GMT -6)   
I have had my whole life due to my childhood, ditto to what intestinalwasps said, all of it. I took my first pill of CBD oil/and curcumin today, that’s suppose to help anxiety too. I will keep you posted if it helps.
UC since '05, now in '15 Mayo Clinic say Chrons/colitis, U of M '17, ulcer in 30% of colon, of those ulcer 75% are ulcerated. No biologics work. Rethinking a game plan with doctor, whom I'm not impressed with.
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