Jim S.

06/01/2007

I love life! I like swimming in the ocean and skiing in the mountains. I'm a workaholic and can't imagine my life any other way!

I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis at age 46. It's such a strange disease, because it slowly changes your life. You start avoiding activities where you're unsure of the availability of bathrooms. Or you find yourself too fatigued from the around the clock bathroom trips to make it to the 10 o'clock news. I found myself taking medications that changed me into an angry guy.

In June of 2007 I had BCIR surgery. My GI doctor had said it's time to be proactive with my UC. It was no longer a question of "Would I get cancer?" but "When would I get cancer?" His recommendation was a j-pouch. After researching this procedure, I rejected it because I read a lot of complaints with incontinence, sleep deprivation, self-esteem, and sexuality. Further research lead me to the Quality Life Association Website where I learned about the Continent Intestinal Reservoir. I remember reading about a guy with a busy life who didn't want to give up his quality of life to this disease. I wasn't ready to give up my life as I had known it.

It was not an easy decision. My GI doc, who I think the world of, did not have good things to say about this surgery. But I made a list of all the pros and cons of both j-pouch and BCIR, and presented my case to him. He has supported me ever since on this journey.

It's been a year now since my BCIR surgery and I can say without hesitation, I love my life! I have been skiing in Vail, zip lined in the rainforest of St. Lucia, parasailing in Hawaii, and work 50+ hours a week!

Jim S.
Surgery - June 2007