PRLog - Jan. 30, 2013 - LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Fever, loss of appetite and fatigue are three symptoms indicative of the flu. What if they are accompanied by abdominal pain, constipation, and diarrhea? The diagnosis may be a stomach virus. But what if conditions change to severe cramps, weight loss and bloody stools? The patient may be suffering with Inflammatory Bowel Disease, or more specifically, Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease. Both diseases share symptoms that may go undetected, have no known cause, and lack the financial support for research. In an attempt to raise knowledge about these chronic digestive illnesses, the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) is hosting their fourth annual Take Steps for Crohn’s and Colitis Fundraising Event.
Approximately 1.4 million Americans suffer from either Ulcerative Colitis or Crohn’s Disease, with 150,000 under the age of 18. Some 20,000 people are affected in Kentucky. CCFA’s mission is to find a cure and improve the quality of life for these adults and children. Support programs, knowledgeable advocates, and educational resources are provided for patients and their families to help them gain a better understanding of their symptoms and treatments.
The Kentucky Chapter of CCFA has named Bart Denham as Lexington’s Honored Hero for their fourth annual Take Steps for Crohn’s and Colitis walk to be held on May 11, 2013. Bart’s battle started in January 2010 during a vacation he started vomiting and experiencing sharp pains in his stomach. After returning home and a doctor visit admitting him to University of Kentucky a CT scan showed an inflamed abscess was causing the blockage in an intestine; which ultimately resulted in Bart being diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Bart’s battle did not end there.
In the summer of 2010 while at a Young Life Christian Camp in Minnesota Bart took a turn for the worse. A camp counselor took Bart to the hospital and he spent about a week in the hospital before being flown back home in a medical-transplant plane. By the middle of July 2010 Bart had undergone two surgeries and was still not getting any better.
Both his parents were worried he might not make it through this journey. But all that Bart could focus on was getting back to his career in running. The day he was supposed to be released from the hospital the doctors discovered he had a fistula, too weak to have surgery, the doctors sent him home in hopes he body would be able to recovery naturally.
It was one step at a time but Bart’s body started to recovery and each day got better and better. By the fall of 2010 Bart was challenged by a teammate to run around the track, he did it although finding himself exhausted afterwards. By January 2011 Bart had returned to his second semester of his junior year of high school and has gained back weight and started training again. On January 22, 2011 Bart ran 800 meters at an indoor meet in the Wildcat Classic placing seventh. And soon after that his running career starting gaining its momentum back.
Currently Bart is starting his second semester as a freshman at Xavier University in Cincinnati, studying business and he is a member of the schools track and field program.
Bart realized the importance of building awareness about these often unmentioned diseases (Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis) and wants people being diagnosed with IBD to know you can get through some of the toughest times and still come out on top.
Bart Denham is Lexington’s Honored Hero and only one of the million Americans trying to figure out the best way to live with Crohn’s. Building awareness, research and funding are critical in curing Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. Do your part to help CCFA spread the word.
For more information about becoming involved in Take Steps for Crohn’s & Colitis, visit www(dot)cctakesteps(
About Take Steps
At over 100 Walk sites across the country, thousands of people will gather this spring and summer to join the fight against Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Together we’ll raise money for crucial research and raise awareness of these painful and unpredictable digestive diseases that afflict millions of people. After only two years, CCFA’s Take Steps Walk has raised over $13 million for research and patient service programs. Our goal is even higher in 2010. We’re committed to help transform the lives of those impacted by these diseases to one of a brighter future based on well-funded, cutting-edge scientific research. Join us today and take a step toward a future free from Crohn’s and colitis!
About Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis are painful, medically incurable illnesses that attack the digestive system. Crohn's disease may attack anywhere from the mouth to the anus, while ulcerative colitis inflames only the large intestine (colon). Symptoms may include abdominal pain, persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, fever and weight loss. Many patients require hospitalization and surgery. These illnesses can cause severe complications, including colon cancer in patients with long-term disease. Some 1.4 million American adults and children suffer from Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, with as many as 150,000 under the age of 18. Most people develop the diseases between the ages of 15 and 35.
About the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America
The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation's mission is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases. The Foundation ranks third among leading health non-profits in the percentage of expense devoted to research toward a cure, and more than 80 cents of every dollar the Foundation spends goes to mission-critical programs. The Foundation consistently meets the standards of organizations that monitor charities, including the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance (give.org) and the American Institute of Philanthropy (charitywatch.org)