If you have consistent stomach issues and have never known why, you may want to ask your doctor about Crohn's Disease.
Crohn's Disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that can affect any part of the intestine.
"And it is what we call chronic meaning that there is no cure," said Doctor Cyrus Tamboli, a UAMS Gastroenterologist. "It is a long term disorder which can cause a variety of symptoms and problems in different people."
For Jacob Smith, it was a diagnosis of arthritis at the age of 14. A year later, he was told he had Crohn's Disease.
"It makes your bones real brittle, I guess your bone marrow. And so I remember I was in high school and we were in PE. And I just tripped or something and fell on my arm and just broke my wrist just like that," said Smith.
The bowel issues and health concerns became so serious Smith weighed about 80 pounds at one point.
But a team of doctors at UAMS now seem to have the symptoms under control.
"He said I looked 100 percent better than when he first saw me. And he wants to, you know, keep in contact with me, you know, every few months.," said Smith.
"It is unusual for a person to stay in remission forever. But with good treatment that is effective for a person remission can be maintained for many, many years," said Dr. Tamboli.
Smith wants other Crohn's patients to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
"On an emotional side, you know, people say I have Crohns, I can't do anything, you know, just get down in the dumps. But you know, you can control it. It don't have to control you," said Smith.
UAMS is having a seminar of Crohns disease next Tuesday night.Crohn's & Colitis Foundation - Arkansas ChapterTreatment Approaches in Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Options to ConsiderTuesday, September 25th5:30 check-in; 6:00 programUAMS College of Public HealthPauly Auditorium, Room G219To register email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 501-590-8948