I was diagnosed with UC in July 2015 and went through a streak of flare ups, one week on lots of meds and no symptoms and the next less meds with more symptoms. Visit after visit to the doctor with a high tapered dosage of prednisone at one stage and regular doses of entocord to supplement my pentasa. I ended up in the hospital for 4 days having only liquids and an IV as sustenance. After this hospital trip I felt the best I had felt in weeks. But a week later the diarrhea was back and I felt the worse I have felt since. Stomach cramps and a strange new unpleasant smell made me worry. The doctor just upped the dosage of my pentasa and gave me more steroids with no results. Other symptoms I had were headaches, from the dehydration. and I felt very tired all the time regardless of how much I slept.
Finally my mom decided she did not like the doctor I was seeing and sent me on a long trip, 630km , to our old trusted doctor. He immediately told me to go for a stool sample before I would see him. I went. The results were positive for C-Diff and he prescribed something…I cannot remember the name and cannot find the prescription…but that does not matter as the medicine did not work. It only removed the symptoms while I was on the drug. But he also sent me to a gastroenterologist at the same time. The gastro redid the tests and found the C-Diff again. He put me on Vancomycin for 14 days and upped my pentasa dosage and I started going to a dietitian at the same time by his request. The vancomycin worked wonderfully it stopped the symptoms that day and two weeks after I had taken the last dose we did another test and the C-Diff was gone.
The dietitian told me to take the following: Calcium supplement (1200mg/day), Omega 3 (3200mg/day), a probiotic and a intestinal support tablet. I believe the combination of vancomycin and the probiotics did the trick. She also changed my diet so that I stay away from gassy and rough food. I eat fish 5 days of the week, where I used to eat red meat every night, and do my best to stay away from anything that can increase the chance of a flare up. I am certain that my C-Diff was caused by my hospital visit so I want to stay away from the hospital as much as possible. I avoid alcohol, chocolates and coffee. The three things I loved the most pre-UC. I do however drink decaf about 3 times a week.
After I was diagnosed I did some googling and found that C-Diff is a very contagious thing. I feared my girlfriend might get it from me so to prevent that from happening I started disinfecting the bathroom whenever I went. I cleaned the toilet and the sink with a dettol disinfectant every time I was in there even if it was just to pee. I also started to keep a disinfectant handwash in the kitchen and washed my hands before i did anything. It sounds a bit crazy, but I did not want to give C-Diff any chance of re-infecting me or infecting anyone else.
I have been symptom free since November 23 2015 and I feel great. Since I changed my diet according to the dietitian’s advice I have also been feeling better altogether. My advice is to always seek a second opinion if the symptoms recur and to seek that second opinion quickly. C-Diff is not a nice thing to have and if the doctor does not know you have it he can make it worse with the wrong drugs. Go see a dietitian, they sound like a waste of money and time, but their advice can really help you to prevent and manage flares so that the terrible C-Diff has no chance of returning. And stay clean. Scratching your bum every morning and then covering your mouth when you yawn could just be the reason you cannot get rid of your C-Diff.
As for the mental strain this disease gave me I had only one solution: God. Knowing that this world is one full of pain and suffering and that I am saved in Christ, and that through him I will one day taste a never ending life of peace, it encouraged me to not fall into any kind of depression. This world is only temporary. And the suffering we experience in it is just as temporary.