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World Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Day occurs every year on May 19 to unite people in the fight against Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Organizations from over 50 countries on 5 continents participate in awareness raising activities to shine light on the debilitating nature of these digestive diseases. Through World IBD Day, Hollister Incorporated is proud to stand with other national and international organizations and impacted people everywhere in raising awareness of Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis.
More than 10 million people worldwide live with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. These are painful, medically incurable diseases that attack the digestive system, causing abdominal pain, persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, fever, and weight loss, as well as potential impact to other areas of the body. The effects of these diseases are largely invisible.
These diseases are often managed through a combination of diet, medication, and sometimes, surgery. While not everyone with IBD has or will have an ostomy, many people living with an ostomy have it primarily due to IBD.
The symptoms of these two illnesses are quite similar, but the areas affected in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and other aspects are different. Here’s a quick comparison of these two diseases:
Who is affected by the disease
|Commonly affected area||
|How it affects the bowel||
To recognize World IBD Awareness Day, Hollister Incorporated hosted a Town Hall at its headquarters in Libertyville, Ill. The panel featured experts who discussed life with IBD, an ostomy and what inspires them to embrace every day with confidence. Click here to view the inspiring panel discussion.
Robin Brown (@robin_browns_beauty_barn) is the reigning Mrs. Mason County, Washington, and will be competing for the state title of Mrs. Washington State in June. She feels ostomy surgery has given her life back, and is proud to be representing those living with an ostomy everywhere through her competition platform on gastrointestinal health & disease prevention. She is also a volunteer with the Seattle Children’s Hospital to help kids with ostomies. Though her efforts, she aims to help debunk the stigma of ostomies and empower others who may be going through similar situations to find the care and support they need to recover and thrive.
Danielle Gulden and Joe Teeters (@doublebagginit) are best friends who met in an ostomy support group in Columbus, Ohio. Together are the dynamic duo behind Double Baggin' It, sharing their humor and personal experiences with the ostomy community on social media since 2015. Their mission is to bring awareness to and advocate for ostomy life in fun and entertaining ways, including ostomy bag art, improv comedy, and more. Danielle and Joe have also led several advocacy initiatives on behalf of the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation at the annual Day on the Hill and the Digestive Disease National Coalition to raise awareness of digestive diseases among Congress and the media.
Krista Deveau (@my.gut.instinct) is a kindergarten teacher from Calgary, Alberta Canada who has been fighting Crohn's disease since being diagnosed in 2001 at the age of 9. On her Instagram my.gut.instinct she brings a fresh perspective and positive attitude to living with an autoimmune disease and an ostomy in the hopes of helping others. She shares the good and the bad – because life isn't picture perfect – but prefers to focus on the positive. There's always a lesson to be learned.
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