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Asymptomatic Chron's Disease

Has anyone else been completely asymptomatic yet pursued treatment for Chron's disease? I'm not seeking medical advice, but would like to understand if anyone else has had this experience and understand what worked for them.

Sorry for the long post!

I'm a late-20s female and for the most part am very healthy. I eat decent/probably better than average, pass a type 4 stool almost daily, and am never in pain/nauseous/fatigued. I definitely am high-strung and stress myself out more than I should, but otherwise, I have no outward health issues. (for this I am very grateful)

However, for a couple years now, about once a year, I get blood in my stool. Never any other symptoms other than constipation, but I always linked the constipation to PMS and thought maybe I just have hemorrhoids from stress. The blood would be bright red, but very, very minimal, and the constipation would only last about a week (not full on blockage for a week, but type 1 & 2 stools).

Back in December 2020, I was bleeding around the holidays (very stressed & not eating my regular home meals) and had some constipation a little bit longer than usual. To the degree that I finally tried a laxative (had never taken one before). I decided it was probably time to see a G.I. doctor since my mother does have UC and was diagnosed around my age. I wasn't thinking I had UC or anything that would cause regular symptoms, but wanted to make sure I didn't have some sort of cancer.

The doctor did blood work (nothing abnormal), a colonoscopy (inflammation & spontaneous bleeding at the ileum, but no hemorrhoids or cancer), and an MRI enterography (showed inflammation of about 10 cm). Ultimately the doctor believes I have Chron's Disease.

My doctor wants me to go on a steroid called Budesonide for 6 months and then have another colonoscopy, but I'm a bit torn. I'm finding it hard to wrap my head around taking medication and putting myself through more procedures when I haven't had any symptoms since December 2020 and those very mild symptoms back in December only lasted two weeks.

Of course long term inflammation is not great, so I don't want to do nothing, but I don't feel like medication is addressing the root cause. I'm also not sure if I can even figure out what the root cause is given I don't have symptoms.

Have you had a similar experience? What's worked for you?

  1. when I was diagnosed I chose not to do treatment. Fast forward 7 years and I am in the worst spot with my Crohns and treatment and steroids aren’t working. So in my opinion (learn from my mistakes) don't do nothing. I am big on more natural route. There are vitamins that mimic steroids. Quick google search. Tumeric is great. Maybe as a preventative? But, Crohns is a sneaky, unpredictable bugger. I have had years of so normal for someone with Crohns. And I have had times, that were so bad. The untreated inflammation has caused an obstruction, fistulas and stricture that medicine won’t touch it. Too much scare tissue. So, all in all my advice. Don’t so “nothing”! Of course taking medications we dont seem necessarily necessary at that time is hard. It was for me. I couldn’t wrap my head around taking on side effects worse than what I was dealing with day to day. It never made sense to me. Now here I am, thinking I shouldn’t have done “nothing”. Best of Luck. My Crohns started in my ilium as well. Hoping you can find comfort in a treatment plan that is best for you!

    1. , sorry to hear you are going through this right now. Inflammation at the ilium can be worrisome due to the risks around blockages so it’s understandable that your doctor would recommend what he did.

      You might have already gotten answers to these but a few questions that come to mind that might help as you think through next steps:

      Did he give you any insight into how bad the inflammation was and how much narrowing was occurring in those 10cm? Did you talk with him openly about your concerns and ask what kind of risks would be involved and the likelihood of those risks if you did nothing at this point in time?

      Best to you as you continue to work through what works best for you. 🙏

      1. because IBD is often a progressive disease, if it were me, I would take the budesonide and try and get the inflammation under control before it has a chance to progress. Does that make sense?
        I can only speak about my own personal journey, which I will share a little bit of with you now. I was perfectly well, and then overnight started with stomach cramps and diarrhea. It was on and off for a few days, and then it was full-on, and the toilet bowl was full of blood and mucous. I didn't even have the energy to put anything in my body, but the blood and mucous continued to come out. I went to the hospital after 2 weeks. I had seen the GP and been given two different IBS meds, but I never even managed to start the second before going to the hospital. I was diagnosed on the day, started on IV hydrocortisone, but ended up losing my colon within the week, and living with a stoma for two years. MY disease progressed that fast.
        It's worth noting that this was in 2007, and we have a lot more treatments available now. Plus, we are all different! We all have different rates of disease progression, symptoms, and what triggers flares, and what treatments work varies from person to person.

        Of course, the decision is only yours at the end of the day. You can only do what YOU think is right, and are comfortable with. It is your body!
        Good luck!
        ~ Sahara (Team member)

        1. Oh, I understand your dilemma. I am at the same point with Ulcerative Colitis. I went from "homebound" to asymptomatic using CBD oils and diet, and now the medical establishment wants to put me on a drug that is neither covered by Medicare nor by my supplemental and it only costs $3000 a month? Their threat is the fear of colon cancer, but at the same time they offer no guarantee their pills will prevent it. What's a boy to do? This one is sticking with the one who brung him to the dance and pocketing an imaginary $3000 a month.

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