IBS is quite common but it's unlikely that you will go on to develop IBD, however people with IBD may have similar symptoms to those with IBS, as well as a host of other (often serious) complaints.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease is basically an autoimmmune disease - here is a brief summary from Healthline:
'The immune system may also play a role in IBD. Normally, the immune system defends the body from pathogens (organisms that cause diseases and infections). A bacterial or viral infection of the digestive tract can trigger an immune response. As the body tries to fight off the invaders, the digestive tract becomes inflamed. When the infection is gone, the inflammation goes away. That’s a healthy response.
In people with IBD, however, digestive tract inflammation can happen even when there’s no infection. The immune system attacks the body’s own cells instead. This is known as an autoimmune response.'
To mark the occasion, I wanted to share our own family of experience of Ulcerative Colitis and how debilitating and serious it can be.
My daughter Síomha was first diagnosed in her Leaving Cert. (final exam year) of school. She had been feeling ill and exhausted for some time but we had no real clue about what was happening and put a lot of it down to study stress. However the symptoms steadily became worse, the most worrying for me was that bowel movements increased to up to 8 a day with blood and severe stomach cramping. We went to the GP and were put on a referral list but we couldn't wait as things seemed to be steadily going downhill.
We made the decision to bring her to A&E where she was immediately put on a drip and the fight to get her immune system under control began. On that first occasion she spent 10 days in hospital with the symptoms only alleviating at the very end.
|Leaving the Ward!|
|In the Corridor|
|Downstairs, nearly there!|
|Escape at last!|