Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a general term to describe chronic and recurrent inflammatory diseases of the intestine that causes abdominal pain, diarrhea, and blood stools. It mainly includes two conditions: ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD). It is estimated that there are more than 10 million people currently living with IBD in the world, and its more prevalent in young adults.
In the occasion of the World IBD Day on May 19, we invite IBD patients to share their stories, so that this disease can be learned by more people, and those who are disturbed by it could embrace life in a more optimistic way.
Listen to Your Body
Josh is an IBD patient in his 20s. Two years ago, Josh was anxious about the fact that all his school friends were much younger than him, but now he has completely let it go.
Because of his illness, he was left behind by his peers in terms of education and job seeking. At first, he tried very hard to catch up.
"When I was a college student, one time I was in hospital. On the hospital bed, I saw a very important job fair in Hong Kong. I immediately jumped out of bed, trying to book the flight ticket. Thankfully, my doctor stopped me. Looking back, I was crazy at that time." Josh himself still laughs about his "crazy" decision two years later.
IBD forced him to think about what kind of life he wants and what kind of work he is suitable for, instead of pursuing the so-called "perfection" and "punctuality" of life in all ways.
"My illness has allowed me to calm down and listen to my body. Now, if my body tips me the signal that something is not right, I will immediately slow down the pace, take some rest and make adjustments. I would never wait until my body goes wrong or my problem comes back. I felt the huge difference of my body and life for the different choices I have made. And this is a very significant change that I have noticed in recent years.”
Josh is now working in a renowned IT company in medical industry. He finally found a career that suits him and interests him. In recent years, he has been "deliberately practicing" to improve his body's resilience to pressure, to gradually adapt himself to the pace of work. In his view, this is also to have a constant dialogue with his own body.
"When it comes to the Internet industry, everyone says it consumes one’s life energy. For me, I think the best way to avoid this is to listen to your own body. Health always comes first and your body decides your path of life.”
I Live My Uncertain Life with My Writing
By A Ca
"I've been through everything an IBD patient would go through. I have accepted the fact that I am a CD patient and I have to live with abdominal pain, diarrhea and blood stool." A Ca recalls the past two years with great emotion.
“I almost thought I was going to have the best time in my life last year, marrying my first love after being in a relationship for nine years, taking a driving trip to Xinjiang for my honeymoon, and moving into my house in Shanghai, until the ulcer in my intestine started bleeding again. I had to have the surgery to remove part of the ileocecal valve that had become stiff due to the ulcer, and had a stoma after the right hemicolectomy.”
Before the surgery, A Ca was already informed by the doctor that he is highly likely to have a stoma depending on the surgery condition, but it is indeed difficult for him to truly accept it. When he woke up from anesthesia and found out he had the stoma, it took him about half a day to digest the overwhelming fact.
"I would say that I have made a compromise with my life rather than accepting my sickness." A Ca wrote this on his social media platform. "The scary thing about this disease is that it will let your guard down for a while, but all of a sudden it comes back like a storm."
Since he was diagnosed five years ago, A Ca has had to make a compromise with life, but he has never stopped writing and documenting his life. He considers this as a way to fight back the uncertainty of his life.
"What makes me even happier is that my doctor is a follower of my social media account. And, every time I post something, I receive a large number of messages cheering for me, and that really encourages me. At the same time, I think my writing can also bring strength to more newly diagnosed patients, which inspires me too."
A Wonderful Doctor Makes Me Want to Help More
By Xiao Yan
After Xiao Yan was diagnosed with IBD at the age of 14, he felt his life was shrouded by a dark cloud. Within a few years, his family has spent all their savings on his treatment. And, following his family's suggestion, Yan entered the medical school.
"It costs too much. My family doesn't have enough money for it. I don't want to continue the treatment.” Xiao Yan once said this to Dr. CHEN Yan, a SAHZU Gastroenterologist.
"If the current medicine is too expensive, then let's change the treatment plan and use some relatively cheaper ones. But you must continue your treatment, only then will you get better and be able to support your family and the society." Dr. CHEN responded in this way.
This outpatient consultation opened another door for Xiao Yan.
A good doctor can influence a patient's life. From that day on, Xiao Yan, patient and medical student, made up his mind to "become a good doctor like Dr. CHEN Yan, to help more patients, especially to comfort their hearts."
Now, besides studying for his medical degree, Xiao Yan is working as a volunteer for a charity foundation dedicated to IBD. Xiao Yan has healed his heart and found a direction for his life through helping others. "Recently, I gained about 15 kilograms because of the pressure of exam, also because I am seeing someone." Xiao Yan said and laughed.
Stories of Josh, A Ca and Xiao Yan are only epitomes of all IBD patients. Like others, they are facing both the troubles and happiness of life. They continue to write their own chapters whiling living their wonderful lives.
Dr. Yan Chen, Ph.D., serves as the Director of IBD Center at SAHZU. She specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal diseases, especially ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, small bowel diseases and various functional gastrointestinal diseases.
Author: CHEN LU | Reviewer: LI JING | Editor: LI JING | Source: SAHZU OFFICIAL WECHAT | Date:2022-05-25 | Views: