Discussions By Condition: Medical Stories

Ulcerative Colitis/Crohn's 31 yrs & 29 Surgeries Later

Posted In: Medical Stories 12 Replies
  • Posted By: R.L.Gardner
  • February 16, 2007
  • 07:34 PM

I am a 51 year old male who was diagnosed with Severe Ulcerative Colitis 30 years ago right after returning from a 1 year tour of duty overseas. I first experienced rather severe bleeding from my rectum would nearly fill the toilet with solid redness was really terrified thinking that I might have somehow contacted it from some form of bacteria I ingested over there.For the next 14 years or so my Doctor's ran me through every conceivable test and drug that they had available to them.Most of those test were very painful or at least very unpleasant and embarrassing think just about everyone in my state has at one time or another seen my back end!!:( In 1992 things started to get a lot worse for me.I had more frenqent flare-ups and some severe anal infections. My stools increased dramatically was bleeding a lot more because of it,and soon thereafter in December of 1993 I was placed in the Hospital for about a month.My wife was about to give birth to our third child so I asked to be released to assist her. It was about then that we noticed that an infected IV site had drained into my elbow causing a severe infection over all of my lower left arm.It took 4 surgeries to repair this and about 3 years to get most of the feeling back.This also triggered major problems with my colitis--so in the summer of 1994 I had my entire large intestine removed.And please believe me when I say the removal didn't go so well!!:( There were many complications.Seven surgeries and 3 months of hospital stay in 1994.For the next 12 years I,and my dear family,would endure some 29 surgeries as of this writing's real kicker here is that after enduring a truly tough 26 years of factory work I was let go because I was unable to perform my regular duties due to a tear of a major tendon in my left arm.My Doctor explained to me that because of a drug (Cipro) that I was prescribed for over 7 and 1/2 years that my inner tissue was yellowed and damaged along with shredding my tendon to almost unrepairable shape.He stated that my left arm would probably never be of much use to me work wise,that it would be premittly disabled.And even though the Doctor should have knowned he said that He didn't and that He was real sorry.After finding this out I of course looked this drug up on the Internet where I found out that in the drugs bio that No One should EVER take Cipro for more than 2 weeks in a row---I took it for 71/2 years.Now I not only have Ulcerates Colitis/Crohn's and their damaging effect's well as 2 bad arms,but I also have the inner tissue of a very,very old man.It's been 3 years since we discovered this ,and,upon having another major surgery ( shoulder ) the surgeon discovered that in fact my tissue is still very yellow and damaged. I suffer from multiple pain throughout my body,I still have multiple bowel movements,and I take way too many daily drugs.I have a very strong Faith in God wonderful wife and a very supportive family,still I quite often find this very hard to deal with.Money is very tight I've been unable to find any meaningful work with my health history.I have been told by all of my Doctor's that I should apply for disability's I still find that another tough pill to swallow I know that for my family's sake I must apply and do it before I'm totally unable to do so. Sorry about the long letter! I would appreciate any and all comments of enlightenment also your prayers. Thank you for taking the time----R.L.Gardner in Michigan

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12 Replies:

  • I am so very sorry to hear about your ordeal. I get so angry when I hear about antibiotic use gone horribly wrong! I didn't understand if you were taking Cipro for your earlier colitis? Or, if this caused the colitis, then why were you taking the cipro for so long? Either way it is so irresponsible and your docs should have known better... Check for drug interactions on www.drugs.com. Click on the drug interactions checker and then type in ALL the meds you are currently taking. Doctors just don't take the time to check this, and if you are taking quite a few, like you said, then you need to do this! I wish I could offer you more help, but the only advise I have is to take as many probiotics as you can on a daily basis. Buy the best quality you can afford. Also, please look into finding a certified Chinese herbalist to help you. Chinese medicinals are very effective for gastrointestinal diseases. Acupuncture would help as well. Many practitioners offer sliding scale fees, and payment plans, it doesn't hurt to ask. To find one near you log on to www.acufinder.com Best wishes.DOM
    acuann 3080 Replies
    • February 17, 2007
    • 00:50 AM
    • 0
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  • Thank you so much for your concern and reply to my letter the Cipro was prescribed to me by my Surgeon that had done most of my major surgeries June of 1994 He removed all but 3 inches of my large intestine.That was supposed to be the cure all for me ,but my colitis symptoms just continued on. About 1 1/2 years later we discovered that Cipro with Azulfidine really seemed to lower and smooth out my symptom's He ,my Surgeon, just continued to prescribe Cipro ( for the next 7 1/2 years ) until, after lifting something a bit heavier than normal I ripped out the large tenon in my left armada's when my Orthopedic Surgeon discovered the shredding of that tendon and the yellowing of my entire inner tissue.We know this because 3 years later as well as several surgeries later my inner tissue is still damaged and yellowed. As of this writing I am still being treated for what I believe is the reaction to and or the side affects if you will to that overuse/abuse of the drug Cipro. The Doctor's are telling me that my left arm will never be of any strong use to me ever again.With that and the damaged tissue as well as the constant headaches,bowel movements of 12 to 14 a day,deep depression at times with quite a bit of daily pain throughout my entire body I feel as if I'm in a very deep hole with nothing but my eventual passing to look to for my relief someday. No,I am not suicidal, I believe because of my strong Faith in God,and a very loving/understanding wife,and loving supportive family. Thank You once again----R.L.G.:o
    R.L.Gardner 4 Replies
    • February 27, 2007
    • 05:32 PM
    • 0
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  • Ouch you aren't having a good day. After 25 years and 9 or12 colon checks many many wrong diagnosis. My GP sent me to allergist, I found out I have an egg allergy. As soon as I stopped eating them, which is very hard everything has egg in it. I stopped all the visits to the bathroom, pain, blood all gone. I been seeing a GI for 26 years and they did nothing but operate, give me drugs that don't work. So get allergy tested. I think allergies are so missed because I don't get watery eyes or a runny nose but my butt sure would run, water and bleed. When I told my GI about the testing he looked at me like I was crazy. Then he said well I did my part and you can go. What an a$%! I will never return to him again. I live in MI and will need a new GI. But i'm real curious to see if the polups stop now that I'm not eating eggs. I hope this helps. Lois:rolleyes:PS All the antibiobics I was taking put me in ICU for 8 days. So be careful.
    loiskerr 29 Replies
    • February 28, 2007
    • 01:19 PM
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  • Thank you for your reply.I will seek out an alergest in my area.Thats one that I never would have concidered!!Thanks SO Much---R.L.G.:)
    R.L.Gardner 4 Replies
    • February 28, 2007
    • 08:17 PM
    • 0
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  • Please do not listen to anything Shula or Acuann tell you. My sister just passed away because Shula and Acuann told her that her doctor was wrong and she did not have a serious condition. Acuann even told her to get acupuncture to get healed. These people are going to be investigated for practicing medicine without a license. Shula and Acuann are specifically wanted in connection with my sisters homocide. Thats right homocide. If she would have listened to her doctor instead of these internet quacks she would still be here today. Rest assured I will do everything in my power to put these two behind bars and shut this website down for good.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hello, that is so sad reading your story. I also have colitis/chron's disease, and I'm 24 at the moment, but have had it since I was 15. Hey just want to let you know keep faith, God is awesome, even if you have these trials and struggles on earth, there is something special waiting with God for everyone who is waiting to see Him.I have a question, where overseases were you when you were younger ? ( what country I mean ), I lived in the middle east and three years after I moved from there I had colitis.I agree drugs/medications all can be very decieving and doctors don't research, just pressure you to take the drugs or are unimpressed. I personally don't feel comfortable taking a drug for more than 1 month, take a break from it and then try again.My best suggestion to you, is eat light, take it one food at a time and see what works and what doesn't. Lighter the food in your body, less the work the gastrointestinal tract has to do, including the stomach. Don't get me wrong don't stay hungry, have food but try avoiding certain foods no matter how good they may be. I had some severe pain this weekend and made me realize about when I had the surgery, I told myself after this gotta start eating healthy again, taking care of my body first.Well keep faith, don't get discouraged, you have been through SO MUCH, take life day my day and don't think about the negatives, keep thinking positive even if nothing goes you way...JUST TRY, it's the best you have. Try distracting yourself by doing somple things you wouldn't normally do, like play board games with your family, clean something, do some useless work...just try distracting yourself. Hope any or some of these things help. God Bless.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I agree with the person who suggested getting allergy tested. My son, who has had Crohn's for three years, had allergy tests run which showed he was intolerant to milk, wheat, yeast, oats and eggs. He also had a comprehensive stool test (3 stools in three days) run which indicated he was infected with a parasite. His GI did not see the need for the allergy testing or stool analysis, however, after going to a Naturopath doctor and eliminating the foods and getting treated for the parasite he is 90% better. He was treated naturally with garlic and umeboshi plums (no antibiotics!) He continues to feel better day by day and we will not stop finding answers until he is completely well. Do not give up your hope and continue to trust in God.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I say again see an allergist. Thanks for ringing in on my post. So many people with GI problems go without any help. I hope you all get tested, it saved my life and my butt. :D Lois
    loiskerr 29 Replies Flag this Response
  • A fantastic treatment for food allergies is NAET. They test you for six different components to egg - protein, albumen, egg white, yolk, chicken and feathers. Then they use a noninvasive acupressure treatment to clear the allergy out of your system...sounds impossible but it works!! Please look into this at www.naet.com it is amazing. Best wishesDOM
    acuann 3080 Replies Flag this Response
  • recent thinking includes detergent residues as a possible culprit.but test for only one thing at a time!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Dear Mr. Gardner,I am very sorry to hear about your troubles. I too have taken Cipro for a long term. Have you attributed any pains or medical problems to the Cipro? I have joint and muscle pain, eye pain, and other issues that I have sought help for. I am on many meds but with the 8july08 announce about Cipro, I am thinking it is probably the Cipro.Any info you can supply would be appreciated. rmenasco@yahoo.comRegards,Rob MenascoKnoxville, TN
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
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  • Dear Mr. Menasco, I am too am very sorry to hear of your troubles. Pain due to medication even if the medication helps for something I think is wrong. Usually there is another drug that is comporable to Cipro without the kind of side affects that you & I certainly found. Look into the drug amoxicellin that is what I now use instead of Cipro. I too had alot of pain throughout my body I believe due not only to Cipro, but to other drugs I was taking and the diseases that I have. The medical community is finding out that Cipro is not all that it's cracked up to be. I fully expect that Cipro will be pulled from the market before the end of this year! You need to also be aware that the manufacture of Cipro has been in constant litagation over the past several years due to the side affects/damage (tendons) it has done to alot of people myself included. Because of what it did to me we tried to sue but were unable to partly because we waited too long to file (over 3 years) and because of the state that we live in. We live in Michigan and it is a no-fault state meaning it is real hard to sue anyone for anything. One piece of real good advice that I can give you is to Google Cipro and look up the sideaffects as well as any other drug that you might be taking. Fully research any and all drugs that you are told to take by your Doctors. Most of which if they were honest would never take thenselves!! Don't just be the GOOD PATIENT be the INFORMED PERSON knowledge is alway the KEY to our better today and tomorrow!!! I sincerly hope that I've been of some help. God Bless, R.L.Gardner.
    R.L.Gardner 4 Replies Flag this Response
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