Discussions that mention asacol

Cancer: Colon board


Hi all..I am back on the boards after having been absent for about a year. Does anyone remember me?
I know a few people were kind enough to inquire about me after I left these boards. The only reason I left is that since I am HIGHLY vulnerable to suggestion...well some of the "doomy-gloomy" responses got the best of me and I began to worry even more. I kind of promised my girlfriend that I would stay away from the internet. So..now I am back and in need of support outside of my friends and family.
I guess we are ALL here for those reasons huh?
Just to refresh your memory if you knew me back then or if you are new...
My basic gastrointestinal history:
I am a 52 (almost 53) year old male.
I am about 5'8 averaging 192-195 pounds.
1998... Had blood in stool...got a sigmoid from my first doctor...he saw red blotches and he called it proctitis.
1998....Got a second opinion from his partner (my current gastro doc) Was dx from sigmoidoscopy with distal (left sided) ulcerative colitis
1998- Current -Never had a colonoscopy.(I have done four preps in the past but chickened out).this is further explained below. I do have one scheduled for September 6th that I plan to do.
1998-2006 -Symptoms over the last 8 years have been various.
I have had bleeding with bowel movements,thin stools,distended abdomen with tenderness of stiffness,fecal urgencies etc.
I list my CURRENT symptoms below. Current meds are.., Asacol 400mg 12 tablets a day (4x3) Rowasa enemas, Analpram cream (as needed) Inderal 20mg 4x daily, Xanax .5 mg 4x daily
I am reaching out for support as I am emotionally and spiritually defeated in the wake of my condition(s). I feel total despair.
I have never felt so depressed in my life as I have been the last few months. I have pain and discomfort almost everytime I use the bathroom and I have MOST of the symptoms of colo-rectal cancer. Certain symtoms that I have are almost always found with cancer.(according to many websites)

As I stated above..I have had a colon disease for at least eight years now. My first doctor ..we'll just call him Dr. S...diagnosed me with proctitis after doing an "on the spot "sigmoidoscopy .After that, I changed doctors ( for a second opinion) and went to his partner at the time... Dr. L (my current doctor). Dr. L. performed a sigmoidoscopy and he diagnosed me with Left sided distal ulcerative colitis. That was also eight years ago. I had never had a colonoscopy and in recent months my symptoms have changed a bit and I even got a couple of new ones. I have been nothing short of obsessed and depressed about how I feel and I have a colonoscopy to undergo in less than two weeks. This has always been a two part fear. The first is about the whole anticipation anxiety deal and more so with the sedation. Dr. L wants me to have an anesthesiologist give me IV Propofol and I will be totally put out ...which I have always had major issues with. (this goes way back to a horrifying experienced I had as a youngster when I was given Ether as an anesthesia to remove a piece of metal in my eye). I have never been put out since then. I'd PREFER to be high on some good drugs..but my doctor adamamently wants me OUT. Okay ...next is the fear ( now the BIGGER FEAR) that the news will only be bad....and I won't be able to handle it. I just can't see ANY way that my symptoms could be from something else....even though my doctor has speculated that it's from UC. My doctor USED to tell me that he thinks I still have UC and not CC. Because I have had so many symptoms for so long and my weight is about the same..he thinks that if I had CC I'd have been gone a long time ago.
Nowadays he says he is through speculating and won't say much until he scopes me.
So...here I am again online doing some research and came across the information below. I copied and pasted it from a website. Remember...I have been diagnosed with LEFT sided colitis ( which is consistent with the pencil thin stools). I also have the incomplete emptying of the rectum and pain. My rectal pain is more associated with every bowel movement and not ALWAYS there so...I dunno. It can't be good. Pain is never good and serves as a warning. And like the medical information says...when there is pain involved it is in the later stages. The other symptoms I have are...small amount of blood in stool (not always),distended abdomen, gas, difficulty in passing stool and the feeling of not completely "emptying", mild-moderate rectal pain (worse with bowel movements),and sometimes taking naps not long after waking up.(this may be due to my medications or depression or worse), I have copied and pasted some information below that will possibly explain why I have been so worried and consumed by my illness for quite a while now.
Bottom line here is..something is I feel that something is partially blocking my colon and or rectum. On a good note, I seem to be maintaining my weight and my last blood tests results (May23rd) were normal.(no anemia). My appetite is generally good, I do not have nausea or vomiting.

Here is a paragraph from the website I referred to above.....

Changes in the stool are often seen. These are chronic diarrhea in many right-sided colon cancers, and pencil-thin stools in left sided or rectal cancer. A feeling of incomplete emptying of the rectum, called "tenesmus" is frequent with rectal cancer.Pain usually occurs only later in the disease, usually due to painful spasms of the intestine, and invasion of the cancer into nerves. If a cancer grows large enough, it can completely block the bowel, causing "bowel obstruction." Symptoms of total bowel obstruction include no appetite, no bowel movements, abdominal pain, bloating, vomiting. This is an emergency and must be treated with surgery. Every colo-rectal surgeon has had the experience of first detecting cancer at the time of this emergency surgery. Other common later ymptoms include abdominal masses as the tumor grows, weight loss, liver enlargement and bone pain with spread to those organs. Nearly all untreated colon cancer will eventually spread to the liver, since this follows the course of the draining (venous) blood from the colon . The liver provides an ideal spongy, blood-rich area for cancer "seeds" to implant and grow. Less than 10% of colon cancers spread to the brain, but a change in motor skills, judgement, memory or sensation is occasionally the first sign noted. Sometimes, the first sign is spread of the cancer to another body area, and the original tumor cannot even be found (but may have been from the digestive tract). This "cancer of unknown origin" is a well described clinical entity, and a different topic.

In summation.....let me just say that my life is soooooo messed up. I have been living like a condemned man. It's insane I know..but to me it's all too very real. Everytime I watch the TV and see someone who has passed away I think to myself that I will be joining them. I reminisce about the past a lot. I try to run away from myself but can't. My sleep patterns are awful. I have cancelled so many gigs( I am a professional musician/comedian/entertainer) that I am going broke. I am at home most of the time..and only going out for food (with my girlfriend) or to get my meds or see a doctor.I can't stand or help my thinking anymore. Everytime I eat or go to the bathroom I am reminded of my illness. It seems that every day for me is full of despair and hopelessness. I rarely joke or play music anymore. I have been crying a lot. My psychiatrist said that she is more worried about my mind than my body.
Thanks for reading all of this.Please don't judge me or feel sorry for me.I already know I am a lot of work and stubborn minded. Also please don't lecture me on how I should have had the colonoscopy. I already know I screwed up by waiting and I have heard a zillion stories about how simple the test is.
I just needed to reach out and vent....and maybe I will find some sanity left in me to cope.
Of course...if anyone has something that they want to say that will help me break out of this hell..and not worry me further please do so...I am all for the support of my online friends.
Can anyone shed some light on my darkest times so far?