Fighting Crohn's: Brianna's Story
Her story: When I was 15, I was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease, a gastrointestinal disorder that can affect any part of the digestive tract. I was constantly running to the bathroom and suffering from low grade fevers, abdominal pain and achiness, vomiting, nausea, anemia, weight loss, extreme fatigue, facial inflammation, dehydration, and an injured social life, among others.
I was introduced to Dr. Swati Kolpuru, an absolutely fantastic physician and individual, and was admitted to the hospital with an indefinite release date. Here, I went through blood transfusions and was advised that surgery was not an option. I eventually was prescribed a drug that stabilized my condition, and after about a year was able to get off the medication. I was weaned off of the drug and introduced to food, and I was back on track with school, cheer, dance, and my social life. I participated in Take Steps for Crohn's and Colitis.
That summer, I relapsed completely. I was sent back to the hospital for my very first surgery, which was taken care of easily. My physician advised a change in medication, and I have been in remission ever since.
At this point in my life, I am doing remarkably well. I have been so inspired by my experience and the people I've met that I plan to study Physiology, go to medical school, and become a pediatric gastroenterologist.
Although I understand that remission may not last forever, and that I will always have the disease, I have been so blessed in my life with an incredible support group of family and friends, a team of renowned physicians and nursing staff, a life lesson, and many, many opened doors. I now live with a new perspective and goal - a goal that will not be hindered because of my illness. Because if and when my disease returns, my boxing gloves will be on. And my fists will be swinging.