Hello Everyone! My name is Palwasha and I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in 2020, at the age of 15. My diagnosis is one of the main reasons why I want to pursue a future in medicine as a Physician Associate, and be able to help with research and advancements for the IBD community, as there is so much room for growth.

One of the biggest struggles I used to face (and sometimes still do!) is the unpredictability of my Crohn’s disease. Having flares & other symptoms at events or fun trips, creates this fear of traveling and not being able to have fun experiences. I always have to worry about how a sudden flare of my Crohn’s will affect or prohibit me, especially if I am going through a long flare. This often caused me to pass up opportunities.

I’m starting to take steps to overcome this fear, in fact, I recently went on a trip to Europe in January. This was my first international trip after being diagnosed and having surgery for my Crohn’s. It was incredibly freeing knowing that I can have a fun trip or experience, as long as I am being careful. It’s comforting and joyful to know that I don’t need to worry or get so stressed out. Although I do have flares here and there, I don’t stress as much as I used to, and really trust my providers and team to get me the help I need.

I don’t know anyone my age that has IBD, as it is an “invisible” disease, for the most part. I was recently introduced to ImproveCareNow and the PAC, and I think it’s awesome that we have a community to share experiences, learn from each other, and most importantly support one another! It’s nice to have a group to lean on, since we all know, navigating IBD can be a very challenging journey. I think this community will allow me to be more involved with my personal journey with Crohn’s disease and understanding it on a deeper level. Lastly, I am hoping to learn from everyone else’s experience, stories, and be involved in helping patients new to their IBD diagnosis.


Get #InTheLOOP with more New PAC member stories on the ImproveCareNow blog
ImproveCareNow exists to transform the health, care and costs for all children and adolescents with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis (Inflammatory Bowel Disease or IBD). To do this ICN has created an inclusive, transparent and collaborative community where patients, families, clinicians, researchers, improvers, collaborators and friends are all empowered to learn, share and continuously improve, bringing about more reliable, proactive IBD care and healthier children and youth. We welcome your involvement:
💙 young patients (14+) with IBD can join the Patient Advisory Council - "Being part of the PAC helps me remember that I'm not alone in this journey." - Rhea 
💚 caregivers of young people with IBD can join the Parent/Family Advisory Council "I was astounded by the instant bond established with parents I had never met. Every conversation provided me with strength. It ignited another purpose in my life." - Maria
💙 make a tax-deductible donation to support ImproveCareNow - "As a 501c3 non-profit, ImproveCareNow is proud to use every dollar donated to advance our mission of improving the health and care of children and adolescents with IBD." - Kristin Howe, Executive Director
💚 stay #InTheLOOP with IBD stories on the ICN blog "Sharing stories and experiences is affirming and validating. Our stories reach others and they help, which is the most wonderful part of being involved with ImproveCareNow." - Quint 
💙 download & use free, co-produced IBD resources - "Physical resources provide patients with actions that we can take toward bettering our quality of life, as well as our current and future care." - Quint
💚 join our CIRCLE -"Resources we found in CIRCLE eNews do not just focus on physical health, but also on critical areas like social-emotional needs, nutrition, back-to-school planning and mindfulness. These are valuable tools for my son to remain healthy." - Lisa 

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