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Joint pain in Ulcerative Colitis - any experience?

(5 Posts)
LaTristesse Tue 23-Nov-10 16:48:23

Hi all,
I've had UC for 18 years and it has mostly been mild and medically controlled. At best I haven't taken any tablets for months at a time and been fine, at worst I had a bout through University where I needed steroids.
Over the last few months I've been experiencing pain in pretty much all my joints, worse at night and first thing in the morning. Went to GP today who's exploring rheumatism, but also mentioned that joint pain can be experienced by UC sufferers.
As that's all new to me I was wondering if there was anyone here who may be able to share their experiences of joint pain with UC? In particular, how is it treated, can it get better and worse, are there any self help / alternative therapies worth exploring?
Thanks in advance... smile

marriedandlookingforcake Tue 23-Nov-10 17:45:32

No experience myself but wondered if you could find any info on the Chrohn's and Colitis UK website

LaTristesse Tue 23-Nov-10 18:55:12

Thanks for the link; I'll have a read...

RunnerHasbeen Wed 24-Nov-10 16:42:29

I had joint pain with UC which was controlled in exactly the same way as the UC, just as another symptom. I have since had the surgery for UC and have developed Rheumatoid arthritis but it presents slightly differently and yours sounds more like the UC version. The rheumatologist has suggested that the fact that my UC was so out of control before the surgery is a strong risk factor to developing RA later, so the only advice I can give is not to let that happen - make sure the UC is as under control as you can get it.

The joint pain will tend to flair with your UC, even if you don't have UC symptoms. It is much easier to notice mild joint pain than mild inflammation in the colon. I also found that cutting out the GP and telling the GI team about the joint pain was the best way to get the two specialities to work together (though the computer records have made this less of an issue).

Do not try any alternative therapies in place of real treatment, but taking acidophicus bacteria has been found (only in IBD patients like us) to help. Some people suggest a low acid diet, which wouldn't do any harm. I think improving physical fitness is important as it reduces the strain on the joints. The IBD nurses are amazing and could really help if you need more specific advice and support.
Neither outcome is as bad as it first sounds, it is normal to feel upset when you are ill and given a permanent diagnosis but it really is the first step to feeling better. Good luck!

LaTristesse Thu 25-Nov-10 12:34:08

Thanks for sharing Runner... I have an appt with my specialist next month, so will run it all by him.
I tried the acidophilus and it seemed to mame everything so much worse, if you know what I mean! Does it tend to do that before it gets better, do you know?

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