Here is a link to the Mayo Clinic’s sight for Crohn’s disease. I find it to be the most concise and organized.
Or… you can read what my experience with Crohn’s is. It took forever to get this properly diagnosed. As with all chronic auto-immune diseases, it can be very elusive. I went for years without really having too many problems. The symptoms were mild enough that many times they would be attributed to things like the stomach flu, a gall bladder attack, food poisoning, and my all time favorite “overly used” diagnosis when they can’t figure out what else to tell you, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). In 2009 I actually had my gall bladder removed and it was definitely necessary to do so since it too was diseased; however, now that we all look back there was an element of Crohn’s disease going on as well. The Dr’s were hesitant to remove my gall bladder because I was having symptoms that were both typical and atypical of gall bladder disease. The final diagnosis didn’t come until just this past November of 2012 even though I’ve been having these symptoms off and on, and with differing degrees of severity since I was in my late teens. What was the straw that finally broke the camels back? I started having blood in my stool and vomit. I know, you’re thinking way too much information. I agree, ew! Trust me on this one…. EWWWWW!
Daily life with Crohn’s can range from days, months, or even years of not really being able to eat or keep anything down. Then, just like that, you can go into remission and proceed for a time without any symptoms at all thus the difficulty in diagnosing it. There are also a few types of Crohn’s one of which causes blockages rather than diarrhea because your bowels have scarred over from previous flare ups of inflammation. Usually Crohn’s is associated with diarrhea, not constipation, so I never thought the two to be related. WRONG, lucky me, I suffer from both. Currently I am having a particularly nasty flare up of the inflammatory nature. Sounds like something a lawyer would say right? Ugh! True to form, during this time all of my bodily systems begin to be affected. My heart is weakening due to malnutrition, I ache all over because of the inflammation that spreads throughout my body, and the fatigue! Can I just tell you how tired I a… zzzzzzzzzzz. Oh excuse me, did I just fall asleep? Probably. My hair is course and brittle, I have strange rashes on my skin that keep me looking and feeling oh so attractive, I can’t sleep because I’m constantly having parley with my toilet through the night, and I just plain feel like poop! Pun completely intended of course.
In a nutshell, you don’t want Crohn’s. It is one of the nastier of the auto-immune diseases. My toilet and I are best friends, let me tell you! If you’ve read my other post you’ll understand this statement. My bathroom is rated a five moon bathroom! When you spend so much time there, why not make it a sanctuary?