The Scariest Thing of All

October 31, 2009 at 2:29 am | Posted in IBD Medical Facts | 3 Comments
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Halloween is a holiday of strange appeal. On this day we celebrate the things that we secretly dread and the fantastical terrors that haunt our dreams- the macabre dance of shadows from whistling wind-swept tree limbs, black-clad witches with crooked noses and masked men with shrill laughs and serrated fingernails. For many of us it’s a time to dress in mysterious costumes, impersonate the dead and embrace the night. For others, Halloween is a night to let loose and have fun behind a mask.

In all its many inceptions, Halloween remains a chance to be someone you aren’t. To do things you wouldn’t normally do.
Why are these pumpkins so smiley?

This idea got me thinking, what would people do if they could step outside of themselves and really be another person? What if you had the chance to really face your fears, and it wasn’t all part of some elaborate night of facades, or a scripted ploy built into the walls of a smoky haunted house with strobe lights and bowls of cherry-flavored blood punch?

Would you come out of it with a different outlook?

As you know from this blog, or if we’ve run into each other somewhere in Manhattan, I am running in December for children with Crohn’s Disease and ulcerative colitis. This is a painful, debilitating disease. And for children it is terrifying. If you don’t know much about Inflammatory Bowel Diseases and the effects they have on people, please take a moment and watch the video below from

In this video, Dr. Susan L. McGladdery, the Regional Director from First Med Centers in Hungary, describes the symptoms and effects of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD).

Here are some key points to take away from this video, quoted from Dr. McGladdery-

Inflammatory bowel diseases, either Crohn’s Disease or ulcerative colitis, occur when “the linking of the digestive tract becomes inflamed… they’re very painful and debilitating and sometimes even life-threatening conditions.”

Both Crohn’s Disease and ulcerative colitis can cause symptoms in the range of “pain, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, bleeding, weight loss, and anemia.”

One last point that was even shocking to myself was the likelihood of IBD sufferers to develop cancer. This is an important thing to consider- we spend a lot time and resources fighting cancer, and it weighs a great deal on our nation’s healthcare system. So why not spend more time fighting conditions that likely cause cancers to form? Isn’t that the kind of preventative action should be taking in this country?

According to Dr. McGladdery, “both ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s Disease also increase your risk of colon cancer. Approximately 10% of patients with inflammatory bowel disease go on to develop a cancer, and the risk is greatest after inflammatory bowel disease has been present and active for 10 years.”

Do you want to do the math on 10% of the 1.2 million people with IBD?

Donate today, so a child doesn’t have to worry about those numbers.



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  1. I found your post to be very insightful and I give you credit for running for the cause especially for the children. I was only 8 yrs old when I first began with Crohn’s Disease, (I’m 51 now), back then, they had no clue, diagnosis was very rare. In fact I was admitted to Boston Children’s at 11 yrs old to the cancer floor, as the doctors thought that was my diagnosis. I feel for the children. I still have bad times with Crohn’s, in fact I’m down to 3 and a half feet of small bowel after numerous resections. Even if there was a cure it wouldn’t help the short bowel syndrome. I’m still kicking along though with optimism, btw,do you have Crohn’s Disease? I have my own blog at, I have a couple of posts, just started, and am not sure if I’m doing it right. How long does it take to get responses?

    • Thanks for the comment. I don’t have Crohn’s actually, just raising money to find a cure for it and help bring children a reprieve from their suffering. Your blog looks like it’s off to a good start, throw some more content up there and I’ll plug it on my page. You’re always welcome to drop comments though, they’re each a link-a-piece 😉

      Also look into widgets that will benefit the reader experience- like an extensive blogroll, archive list, calendar, etc.

      Best of luck to you, and I hope you stay in relatively good health. Take care!

      • I’m still reading up on widgets, tags, etc. I guess I should have done this before I posted. Anyhow, I want to tell you how much I admire you for doing this run for chilren with Crohn’s. Usually, it’s about cancer, not that cancer doesn’t need advocacy and money too but it’s for the most part never about Crohn’s. I give monthly to the CCFA, my doctor is a member of this and I have found good health since I’ve seen him. If you need more info. that’s a great place to go!!!

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