More than half a million people in the UK are being asked to give their opinions on the healthcare they receive. Their answers will help shape the way treatment is delivered in the future.
The IBD Patient Survey is available for anyone with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) to fill out and asks all sorts of questions about the way they are treated.
Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis are the two most common forms of IBD. They are lifelong illnesses affecting a person’s digestive system. They can cause painful ulcers and inflammation in your gut.
The symptoms can be painful, and some people may find them embarrassing to discuss or even think about. These conditions are not all about poo, but quite often the first warning signs you will notice are frequent diarrhoea, blood in your poo, agonising tummy pain and wind.
Many people don’t want to talk about their symptoms, they can feel alone or like they need to hide what is happening – but there is help out there. Over 500,000 people in the UK have Inflammatory Bowel Disease so the chances are you know somebody who has it too.
There is no cure for either Crohn’s or Colitis but both illnesses can be treated and, if managed well, people with a diagnosis can live a very full life. As with any long-term condition, patients need to see their hospital team regularly. The IBD Patient Survey is the first opportunity since pre-Covid to get a clear picture of what people with Inflammatory Bowel Disease are experiencing right now.
If you have Crohn’s or Colitis, you can complete the survey here (or scan the QR code below to go to the website) It won’t take long and it is really important to have your say because everybody’s opinion matters. The survey is open until July 28th 2023.
Crohn’s and Colitis can affect people from all backgrounds: of any age, race or gender. Nobody should feel embarrassed or alone – there is always somebody who can help.
Crohn’s & Colitis UK is the leading expert charity for people with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. The organisation’s CEO, Sarah Sleet, says even if you don’t want to think or talk about your bowels, it’s important to pay close attention to your toilet habits, because if you leave things too late, your health is at real risk: “Our message is simple: if you have frequent diarrhoea, stomach pain or blood in your poo, don’t suffer in silence, or ignore your symptoms.
“Why not spend 30 seconds filling in Crohn’s & Colitis UK’s online symptom checker? It is quick and easy to use, and you can take a copy of the results to your GP to chat about what has been going on.
The sooner you find out what’s wrong, the sooner you can get the help you need.”
Dr Kevin Barrett, who is a GP, says responding quickly is important:
“The earlier Inflammatory Bowel Disease is diagnosed the better the outcome. So please don’t delay in seeking help if you have symptoms that could be Crohn’s or Colitis.”
Perhaps you’re worried about new symptoms you’re having, or know somebody who’s experiencing bowel problems like the ones we have mentioned. If that is the case you can go to www.crohnsandcolitis.org.uk where there is lots of help, support and information available, including an interactive symptom checker.
As Dr Barrett says: “Please don’t be embarrassed. It’s likely we’ve heard or seen it all before. If we don’t know what you are worried about then we can’t help.”