F-M Community Walks To Raise Awareness About Crohn’s & Colitis

Marcus Stephenson was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease in 2013 at the age of 7

FARGO, N.D- The Fargo-Moorhead community walks from Sanford Broadway Medical Center to Hotel Donaldson as part of the Crohn’s and Colitis foundation’s fundraiser to raise awareness about the illnesses.

Marcus Stephenson has always been an athletic kid.

Suddenly, he started getting symptoms that were not normal for his age.

“It started when I was playing baseball. Like t-ball, I would be taking naps during the game, I would be on the bench tired,” said Marcus Stephenson who has Crohns Disease.

“He was also having some abnormal bowel movements that were a different color,” said Rhonda Stephenson, Marcus’ mom.

Marcus’ mom, Rhonda Stephenson, who is a registered nurse knew something wasn’t quite right.

“It did take us probably from May of that year until October of that year to get a confirmed diagnosis. So it took some time seeing doctors and doing blood work,” said Stephenson.

Marcus was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 2013 at the age of 7.

“It’s normal. It’s just to avoid the things that I’ve known to avoid multiple years now. It’s just part of the routine,” Marcus said.

Marcus is in remission, but still remains conscious of the foods he needs to steer clear from in order to keep symptoms from coming back.

“Blueberries, craisins, cranberries, raisins, high fiber foods. So, any of the foods you can’t really peel, and eating the peels kind of get his gut,” Stephenson said.

They say the lack of conversation about the disease is what makes it so unknown to most people.

“I think people who have it may not realize how common of a disease is. It affects about 1% of the US population,” said Gastroenterologist at Sanford Dr. John Bassett

“Not very many people know about it. If I get asked what I do have, they ask what’s that” Marcus said.

According to the Crohn’s and Colitis foundation, as many as 70,000 new cases of IBD are diagnosed
in the United States each year.

Here is the link to donate to Crohn’s and Colitis.

Categories: Community, Local News, North Dakota News