In May 2004 I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. I didn’t really know then what it was, and in August of that year I was admitted to hospital when a severe attack took hold. After several weeks and lots of drugs, my colon was removed, leaving me with a stoma, and using an ileostomy bag to collect my poo.
The next year I had an internal pouch formed, and had several months of further problems, and eventually further surgery. Things were good for a while, but in recent years I have had problems with abscesses, fistulas and infection, and some other related unpleasant side effects. Tonight I walked around our close with my son trick or treating, and when I got back I was in pain and bleeding.
So the surgeons have been consulted, and the pouch is going to go – in January. Well, that will be the first step.
I’m going to be blogging about this surgery and recovery, and filling in what has happened to reach this point. Inspired in part by the #getyourbellyout campaign, I’m going to be fundraising as I do this awareness raising for two charities that have given me support over the years – The Ileostomy & Internal Pouch Support Group (the ia) and Crohn’s & Colitis UK.
If you’d like to make a donation, you can visit my fundraising page at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/RichardHarris19
If you have any questions about what is going on, then please leave me a comment or get in touch via Twitter.