Mike's Marathon for Crohn's Disease/Ulcerative Colitis
Known collectively as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis affects almost 1 in 100 people. They are painful, medically incurable diseases that attack the digestive system. Crohn's disease may attack anywhere along the digestive tract, while ulcerative colitis inflames only the large intestine (colon). Symptoms may include abdominal pain, persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, fever, and weight loss. Many patients require numerous hospitalizations and surgery. Most people develop the diseases between the ages of 15 and 35; however, the incidence is increasing in children.
I was diagnosed not only with Crohn’s disease, but also Ulcerative Colitis at age 14. My father also struggled with both diseases that caused him almost to have large portions of his intestines removed due to pre-cancerous polyps. This disease has caused my life unforeseen stress from unhealthy weight loss and blood loss to a major blood infection that caused my body to become septic and almost passing away. I currently am under a therapeutic named HUMIRA but some major side effects that can occur while taking it are nervous system problems, blood cell problems, liver problems, heart failure, and cancer like lymphoma. I always have to monitor by blood through testing on this drug to verify I do not develop any symptoms small or serious. Though the drug has helped me a lot the past 3 years, I am always curious if I will end up with one of these severe side effects.
The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation is the largest non-profit, voluntary, health organization dedicated to finding cures for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). The Foundation’s mission is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults who are affected by diseases. The Foundation works to fulfill its mission by funding research; providing educational resources for patients and their families, medical professionals, and the public; and furnishing supportive services for those afflicted with IBD.
I am choosing to join this team in support not for myself but for others who suffer from Crohn’s or Ulcerative Colitis. I want to help find a cure or a new therapeutic that doesn't have as serious side effects as those now. This disease is not only embarrassing but very hard on your body especially when you don't know you have it or during the process of finding what therapeutic works for you. It caused me to not be able to participate in activities as a young man. During my adulthood I was constantly weak and unhealthy at times not able to work or function at everyday life.
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