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Ulcerative Colitis or just hemorroids?

  • By hopefulskeptic

    Hi all. I’m new to the forum, and new to this ailment. I am 33 and used to consider myself pretty healthy. My diet has always been what I thought was “reasonable” for an American. I was never under or overweight, though I did start to set records on the scale in my late 20’s and lose that college physique. Around that time, I had a couple hemorroids. A little blood when I wiped, an occasional external one. Once, I even had one removed. That hurt like a bastard, and I swore I’d never do THAT again! Anyway, I started to notice blood on the toilet paper again a bit over a year ago. I thought, oh, another hemmoroid, but then I started to notice mucous on my stool. I was on a 3mo work trip abroad and wanted to wait to get back state-side to go to the doc. I was still finding blood, and more of it on my toilet paper when I got back and my GI ordered a colonoscopy. When I found out how much they cost, I cancelled it. I was traveling to my home country, where at a fine clinic, you can have a modern colonoscopy for 1/10th of the cost. So I did that. The doctors there diagnosed me with Unspecific Ulcerative Colitis. By then, I was seeing blood nearly every time when I wiped. I didn’t even know what Colitis was! So they prescribed me mesalamine. It worked like a charm! I stopped bleeding within a day or 2. Everything went back to normal, and it was as if I was cured. Well, I ran out of the stuff, and the bleeding came back. So I went to another GI here in the states, and they put me on Apriso (a mesalamine cousin, basically a delayed-release Advil to reduce inflammation in the colon). At first, that worked wonders, but then, the efficacy wore off. Now I’m taking 4 375mg pills per day and my toilet looks like a had miscarriage every time I move my bowels.
    When I watched the video of my colonoscopy, I was surprised by how normal everything seemed. It was only at the very end, in the lower colon where I saw some reddening and a bit of blood (very minute amount). But it didn’t seem alarming, looking at it. But my symptoms have continued to get worse since then.
    Now when I void my bowel, the stools seems to back up, then with a push, rush out, like there was a restriction there. It never comes out slow and steady like before. And when the stool comes, so does the blood. It drips into the bowl, especially when I strain.There is some cramping lately as I void bowels, but only then, and it’s not unbearable. Just a bit of cramping, then it goes away. I do sometimes feel a bit nauseated while cramping, and that feels very odd.
    Otherwise, I seem to be fine. A while back, I tried Juicing, to give my bowels a rest, in hopes that it’d heal on its own. I lost 15lbs those 1.5 weeks, but I still have fat on me. I can even stand to lose 5lb more. I haven’t been losing weight since. No foods hurt me (right away). It’s only when I release them that they avenge my gluttony.
    Later, I discovered Jini Patel Thompson’s “Listen to Your Gut” book and forum. I am currently following her protocols for Ulcerative Colitis: taking the 3 Natren Probiotics (in powder form), taking the Wild Oregano Oil, as well as the Mucosaheal pills. After about a week, I see no results. I’m still on the Apriso. A week or 2 ago, I developed this thing where I cannot pass gas without a bit of liquid coming out first. It’s to the point where each passing of gas has to be on a toilet. These wet farts are waking me up at 5am each day for the past week and forcing me to the bathroom. It doesn’t seem to matter what I eat or drink. When I pass the liquid protion, there seems to be some sediment in it, like dissolved stool and mucous. When I pass the liquid/gas, I feel like there is more, but when I strain, only boold comes, dripping into the bowl. So I stop. After that, I feel fine.
    What gets me is that all stories of UC include FATIGUE, DIARRHEA, and CRAMPING. I have none of that. I feel fine. I’m rennovating my home, lifting things after working a full day, waking up early, and going to bed late. My stools aren’t liquid, but aren’t hard. They’re normal, I’d say. And the only cramping I have is just lately, and only when I void my bowels.
    So with these symptoms, I wonder if I wasn’t misdiagnosed. Maybe I have just a bad case of hemorrhoids or something? I tried showing my video to my GI, and she took the most cursory glance at it before agreeing with the UC diagnosis. I’m still not convinced…

  • By Pam.Kingsland Keymaster

    Hi @hopefulskeptic , thanks so much for sharing your journey with us. I know many people here can relate to what you’re going through (the confusion and uncertainty). Although those with UC might describe feelings of fatigue, diarrhea and cramping, it’s important to remember that this disease affects everyone in different ways. What might be a symptom for one person, could be non-existent in another. This creates so much frustration! If you’re feeling as though you may have been misdiagnosed, or if you current symptoms do not improve, I might consider getting a second opinion?

    I’m glad you’ve found our community, and I hope you find some comfort here. Please reach out anytime, and keep us updated on how you’re doing! We’re all here for you. Warmly, Pam (team member)

  • By hopefulskeptic

    Thanks Pam. I recently went and took all the tests my GI prescribed. Hopefully, they’ll shed more light on the situation. I’ve been reading the Listen to Your Gut book and following the Author’s protocols for treating UC. So far, I’ve had 0 results. I bleed every time I move my bowels. Sometimes, the amount of blood is staggering. I’ve been on the protocols for about 2 weeks now and still taking my GI prescribed Apriso (1.5g). I’ve bumped that up to 2g and the bleeding seems to be getting better. I plan to continue with the protocol and have a followup with my GI. Maybe I can get her to issue me a Sigmoidoscopy to see what is going on and why I’m bleeding. When I had a colonoscopy this summer, the only trouble area was just at the end of my large intestine ( I guess the colon).
    It still doesn’t make sense to me that I have an “Autoimmune Disease”. My body has been just fine for 32 years, and BOOM! Just like that it starts attacking itself? Scientists amaze me with the level of detail they can deduce the action of certain chemicals on the brains of mice but they can’t figure out what causes UC??? IT’S LUDICROUS! It seems like nobody is interested in actually finding a cure, they just want to develop pills to keep us on. Well, I think it’s caused by a nafarious gut bacteria, and have read that some had luck killing it with Wild Oregano Oil, others starved out it by cutting out all grains/breads. I plan to try both. I’m not giving up and I’m definitely NOT going to rely solely on what the doctors say, as they seem like they’re hamstringed by the medical code. There is nothing officially stated/accepted regarding the causes and cures for UC in the US medical society. Hence I’m extending my search to holistics and other countries, where people seem to have achieved permanent remission.