Inflammatory Bowel Disease

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Hi,

I'm very new to this and not sure if I've posted in the correct part, sorry if I have.

For years I have been told I have IBS, then one day I got a constant pain in my left hand side that would not go away with regular pain killers. So I had many blood tests and a stool sample. A few days later I received 3 missed calls from my doctor which made me so anxious and scared. I called her back to be told my fecal calprotectin has flagged high and that it would be some sort of IBD. can anyone explain this further for me? My brother has Crohn's disease and my dad has ulcerative colitis. So she has assumed I have one of these. Although on doing some research I have found that an inflamed bowel could mean cancer? I am very anxious and can't take my mind off this thought. Because my pain is constant and feels like it is radiating from my side to my back.

In information would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

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  • Posted

    Hi!

    Sorry to hear you're having trouble.

    Calprotectin is a protein released by immune cells. So if your levels are above a certain level it's a sign that you have inflammation in your digestive system, likely to be your colon.

    It is possible that inflammation can be caused by gastroenteritis but with your family history of inflammatory bowel disease and your history of IBS it would indicate that unfortunately you probably have a form of IBD too.

    Having IBD does slightly increase your risk of Bowel cancer but is certainly not an indication you have Bowel cancer so don't worry about that.

    Although not nice, having IBD doesn't mean the end of the world many many people can go on to live very good lives and doesn't stop them from achiving anything.

    In a strange way I'm glad I have ulcerative colitis now, I've had it for 8 years and although it's been challenging, I'd say it's hanged my life for the better.

    I appreciate my life more, l'm more determined and don't take things for granted.

    Good luck with your journey which ever way it goes. Remember there are millions of others going through the same and more than happy to offer support, advice and guidance.

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    • Posted

      Thank you very much for your reply and feel a little better. I always think the worst possible situation with any sort of pain but since doing research I seemed to have convinced myself it's cancer.....my doc has reassured me that it must be some sort of IBD. The only symptoms I have are pain and fatigue. I don't have any blood or diarheoa. I need to await to hear from the hospital to see if they wish to check me out with the camera.

      Thank you again.

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    • Posted

      Keep us posted on your progress Clairey. i have colitis too. I am flaring at moment waiting for another colonoscopy as my calprotectin stool sample recently flagged high too. this time though, only tiny bit of fresh blood twice which is unusual for colitis as it usually produces more blood, as opposed to crohns which doesn't usually produce alot of blood. I, like you, am currently experiencing almost constant pain & extreme tiredness. get plenty of rest - important - & try to drink as much water/squash as poss to prevent dehydration. I do find cocodomol helps slow my bowels down a bit, & take the edge of the pain (but only takes the edge off it.) xxx
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    • Posted

      p.s. it's most unlikely to be cancer - more probable you have either colitis or crohns - similar diseases under the umbrella of "inflammatory bowel disease" or IBD for short. The next course of action would normally be a colonoscopy to look at your bowel directly & take biopsies - done by the gastroenterology dept at your local hosp. Have they referred you for this? xxx
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    • Posted

      Thank you Loo for your reply. This is greatly appreciated. I now feel a bit more at ease knowing other people are feeling as horrible as me. I myself haven't had any noticeable blood in my stool yet, I think which makes me worry more because the main symptoms of these are blood. Yes my doctor said she will write to the hospital and see if they wish to check me out. I go on holiday in 3 weeks but she said it won't be till after then which makes it even more rubbish as I need to try forget about this and enjoy my holiday. It's defo hard.
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