Crohn's Disease Forum » Support Forum » Having a flare up mid PGCE

12-08-2013, 01:53 PM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: London, United Kingdom
Having a flare up mid PGCE

Hi all,

This is my first post on here so first of all let me say hello!

I was diagnosed with Crohn's in 2006 when I was 14. I am now 22 and a mother of a five-year-old.

Like most people my age I have spent the majority of my life studying. With study comes stress, and with stress, as we all know, comes flare ups.

I have always managed to get through it pretty well, having graduated from university this year, however I started a PGCE (teacher training course) in September and stress levels have been rising ever since. I'm currently on placement in a secondary school and I'm debating whether I should let my mentor know that I'm having a flare up or not? I was warned before starting the course that it can be very stressful and had to go for a medical check-up to ensure that I could cope. Of course I convinced them that I could so I don't want to ruin my chances of finishing the course. I'm not sure what can come from letting my mentor know as there is no way out of being on placement, if I miss my classes then I have to make them up again next year, which means that I won't qualify this year. I also don't want to drop out as there's every chance that I will recover before the end of the academic year. What do I do?!
12-08-2013, 02:06 PM   #2
valleysangel92's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: United Kingdom

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Hello, welcome to the forum

I know how it feels to be in this situation, I had a big flare up while I was at uni doing a nursing degree, I was undiagnosed at the time, but I'd been having symptoms since age 15 . I understand that your education is important to you and how stressful it is to be faced with the prospect of not completing, I had to let my lecturers to make the same choice, I chose to let mentor know as I kept being admitted to hospital. They were very supportive, and tried to help me stay and keep up. I did end up having to leave, but that was due to extreme circumstances, there were periods where I wasn't even able to keep sips of water down. The university did keep me a place open for the following year if I'd been well enough to return. So don't despair, even if you did have to leave, generally there are ways they can still help.

I would honestly tell them, they need to know because you don't know where this flare is going to go. They may suggest taking a week or two off, but they may also just let you tell them what you think you need, for example , you may be allowed to not do some of the more stressful paper work etc or have extended deadlines for planning etc. They would also be able to make allowances if you needed sudden or frequent bathroom trips.
If you don't want to speak to any one at your placement, how about your course or personal tutor? They generally have a way of helping with these things and should provide you with some more options.

At the end of the day, your health is more important than any thing and while it would be horrible to have to leave or resit anything, it's better than running yourself into the ground with stress, and the more likely option is that they will be understanding and do what they can to help you stay on the course. Uni is very stressful, and it will just keep building with deadlines and exams, which if you keep your uni informed can be made a lot easier (more time in exams, leniency with deadlines, allowing resits for extreme circumstances where your illness affects your ability to perform) .

They can't force you to leave the course now that you are there, and in my experience they would rather keep students whenever possible. *Hugs*

coeliac disease/Osteopenia /Crohns/Arthritis/
laperoscopic hemicolectomy 25/06/ 2013

Meds- Vedolizumab, pentasa, Lansoprazole, Vitamin D, prochlorperazine, Oramorph, MST, B12 shots My journey with crohns:

Allergic to - inflectra, aza

Non CD meds - Gabapentin, paracetamol, ventolin

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