Category Archives: ulcerative colitis

About IBD Podcast Episode 145 - IBD and PTSD With Stephanie Brenner, LCWS, MSW

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and IBD With Stephanie Brenner, LCSW, MSW

My guest is Stephanie Brenner of Chronic Illness Psychotherapy. Stephanie is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has experience in working with clients with chronic illnesses. She has also taken on a variety of roles in GI space, including previously serving on both the advisory team for the Pediatric Crohn’s Guidebook and the recruitment committee for the Rome Foundation’s GastroPsych organization.

Stephanie lives with Crohn’s disease and a permanent ileostomy and is also a cancer survivor. I asked her to help us better understand PTSD and PTS as they relate to having a chronic illness like IBD. She defines PTSD and why it can happen with IBD, what some of the signs and symptoms might look like, and what patients can do to address their mental health

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Designer $hit - About IBD

Designer $hit: A Microbiome Love Story

Fecal microbiota transplant (FMT) is pretty much what it sounds like: taking stool (poop) from one person and putting it into another person’s colon. It is an idea that has been under study for use in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and ulcerative colitis especially, for many years.

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Top Gear Picks for Travel With IBD

Top Picks for Travel With IBD in 2023

A few days ago, I was talking to an IBD friend and I said how weird it was for me to consider traveling. 

“It feels like something other people do,” I said. “It’s not something that I get to do.”

It’s a mindset I’ve needed to overcome because traveling when I was younger and my ulcerative colitis was at its worst was a nightmare. Now I’ve had surgery to create a j-pouch and my disease is much better controlled.

There’s no reason I can’t go all the places and do all the things!

I still have to do some problem solving, though, so I thought I’d share some of the products I’ve found that made my life easier while bouncing around cities in the UK or heading up to Maine for a camping trip.

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About IBD - Experiences Are Solitary but Learning Is Communal

Experiences Are Solitary but Learning Is Communal

There’s one question that I’ve been asked many times, and it’s one that I also ask others when I conduct interviews:

“What advice would you give to people who are newly diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis?”

I see the importance of getting both new and veteran patients to give their experience with a new diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It might be fair to say that most people, in hindsight, whether this is weeks or decades later, can point out where their journey could have been improved.

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About IBD - IBD Complicates Everything, Including Wedding Season

IBD Complicates Everything, Including Wedding Season

Being in a wedding party is a difficult time when you’re diagnosed young with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). While it is an honor to be asked to participate, for me, it came with the challenges of being fitted for a dress while living with severe ulcerative colitis.

When I was in my early 20s, like many women, I was a frequent bridesmaid. In some cases, this meant being fitted for a dress that was picked out by the bride. All the women in the wedding party would order the same dress, in the proper size, and have it altered, if necessary.

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About IBD - Do You Know How to Hit Your Target?

Do You Know How to Hit Your Target?

We all have goals in life. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) can sometimes get in the way. It’s not ideal, but that’s the reality.

However, the goal of treatment should be to get us back to doing what we love to do, and minimize the effects of Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis on our lives. Our doctors also have goals for us. These goals might be different, but they’re all important in getting symptoms and inflammation minimized and living life on our terms again. 

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Colectomy Surgery, or Body Modification?

Colectomy Surgery, or Body Modification?

When I had surgery to remove my colon (which is called a colectomy) and place an ostomy, I knew exactly what was happening. I knew I would wake up with a loop ileostomy. It was the first step in 2-step j-pouch surgery to treat my ulcerative colitis.

My colon was falling apart, full of inflammation and pseudopolyps (non-cancerous polyps that can occur with IBD). I had a few months to prepare for surgery, including meeting with my surgeon and an enterostomal (ET) nurse. When I woke up with a stoma and an ostomy appliance, it was not a surprise.

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About IBD Podcast Episode 108 Cover

About IBD Episode 108 – Colitis Conversations: The Impact of Ulcerative Colitis

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) affects our quality of life. What that means, however, is going to be different for each person. It may depend on many factors including disease severity, access to care, and support structure.

The symptoms of ulcerative colitis such as diarrhea can prevent people from taking part in activities that aren’t near a bathroom. Bleeding can cause anemia, leaving people feeling tired and unable to go about regular activities. Not to mention the effects on mental health, relationships, and finances.

Danielle Gulden, ulcerative patient, ileostomate, and co-founder of Double Baggin’ It and Dr Nana Bernasko, IBD Nurse Practitioner and Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at Penn State Health, discuss how to manage the effects of IBD on everyday life.

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About IBD - Do You Have a Roadmap for Your Ulcerative Colitis

Do You Have a Roadmap for Your Ulcerative Colitis?

One of the biggest hurdles in getting a diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is first in understanding that the symptoms aren’t normal. They’re not from a virus or a parasitic infection — they go on for too long for it to be from those causes. 

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About IBD Podcast Episode 107 Cover

About IBD Podcast Episode 107 – Colitis Conversations: Getting an Accurate Diagnosis

Once people understand that symptoms like ongoing diarrhea and bloody stools are not normal, they need a way to overcome embarrassment and talk their symptoms over with a health care provider. Having an open and honest conversation will help ensure a quicker diagnosis of ulcerative colitis and getting the right treatment.

On this episode, Rasheed Clarke, ulcerative colitis and j-pouch patient and author of Three Tablets Twice Daily and Dr Christina Ha, an IBDologist at the IBD Center at Cedars Sinai, provide support and guidance to patients with IBD symptoms, newly diagnosed patients, and anyone who is looking for a new way to speak with their health care providers about IBD treatments.

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