At the end of the year, we see the gift guides come out. There’s one for every type of person, usually focused on age and gender, but also based on hobbies or interests. Or, even, based on chronic illness such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
There’s no doubt, gift guides are helpful. For someone like me, who doesn’t go out shopping a lot, it’s useful to know what’s out there. Learning about the latest in cookware or video games can be helpful. To me, the funniest ones are the gift guides for teens or college students. Even I know they just want cash.
For some people living with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, the disease puts roadblocks in the way when it comes to going to school, having a career, and participating in sports. For Lauren Thibodeau, a diagnosis of ulcerative colitis led to a complication of medical catatonia, which derailed her life and her career as a college golfer. However, with her family, her medical team, and her teammates around her, she made her way back to the golf course and in fact, wound up playing better than ever. Lauren shares what kept her motivated during the long and difficult recovery and how it changed her perspective on her golf game as well as her outlook on life.
Does living with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis make a person more resilient? And is resilience something that should be a part of management plan for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) or other chronic illnesses? Mara Shapiro, healthcare journalist and Crohn’s disease patient, has had no other choice but to find a way towards resilience in her life, having lived through grief and loss early in life, followed by the diagnosis of several chronic illnesses. She provides deep insight on coping mechanisms and resilience, including the various ways we can look at these ideas to fit our own needs.
When it comes to people with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis serving in the military, the usual policy is that the two things are incompatible. The reason being that people living with an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) need care and treatments that are incompatible with being deployed. However, sometimes there are other considerations, as Dr Daniel Rausa describes. Dr Rausa was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease while serving in the Navy, and he has advice for people who live with an IBD and want to serve or who want to pursue a medical career. He also describes why it’s so important to follow up and stay on top of transition of care when leaving military service.
What if we knew which patients would have severe Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis? And which wouldn’t? How about if we could tell which drug would work best in which patient? Knowing these things would change how inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is diagnosed and treated. Plus, more importantly: it would improve lives. Dr Andres Hurtado-Lorenzo, Vice President of Translational research and IBD Ventures at the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation explains biomarkers and how they may play into the future of how IBD is diagnosed, managed, and treated.
Have you ever been out in public and needed a toilet — but there wasn’t one available?
This has happened to everyone who lives with an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD, Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis), which is why so many of us have “bathroom accident” stories. Needing to use the bathroom is a basic human need, but it’s treated like an afterthought. That’s where the Restroom Access Act comes into play: a law passed in several states that allows people to request access to a toilet when they live with certain conditions.
There is no such law currently in California. That’s hopefully going to change thanks to the efforts of Ashlyn Saltzburg and Kelly Silk. Ashlyn is a teenager living with IBD and Kelly is her mom. Their effort to get a law passed in California is nothing short of heroic. Learn about how they got started on this journey to have the Restroom Access Act passed in California, and how you can help.
Send your letters of support for AB 1632 to Assemblymember Weber’s Legislative Assistant, Raymond G. Contreras: firstname.lastname@example.org
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.
Whether in remission or not, the day-to-day of life with IBD can be challenging. Living with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, even when feeling well, might mean making lifestyle changes, going to doctor’s appointments, and taking medications. Many people are diagnosed young, at a time when their friends aren’t going through anything similar. To understand how people might deal effectively with these changes, Amber talks with Dr Sandra Quezada, a gastroenterologist who specializes in IBD at the University of Maryland Medical Center and Varada Srivastava, a Crohn’s disease patient and biotechnology major who is also a 2022 Crohn’s and Colitis Young Adults Network fellow.
Myths and misconceptions about IBD are common. Even amongst patients, there’s things that take time and education to understand because the things that swirl around in the public consciousness are not always true. To help understand why we can’t get rid of some of these common misconceptions, Amber Tresca is joined by gastroenterologist and IBDologist Siobhan Proksell, MD, and ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patient advocate Molly Dunham-Friel, MPH of Better Bellies By Molly.