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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Sports Network: Helton receives diagnoses [sic]

Colorado Rockies first baseman Todd Helton’s stomach discomfort was diagnosed as acute terminal ileitis by the team’s internist, Dr. Allen Schreiber.

Schreiber has prescribed more rest for the five-time All-Star before he can begin exercising.

No date has been determined for his return to the Rockies.

Any doctors in the house care to comment on acute terminal ileitis?  By the way, that’s “terminal” as in the end of the intestine, not “terminal” as in fatal.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 25, 2006 at 10:53 PM | 31 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: rockies

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   1. More Dewey is Always Good Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:02 PM (#1988572)
acute terminal ileitis

AKA Crohn's disease, right?

If so, one way to treat is with *cough* steroids.
   2. More Dewey is Always Good Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:03 PM (#1988577)
And by the way, "terminal" doesn't mean terminal in this case, I don't think.
   3. Gaylord Perry the Platypus (oi!) Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:10 PM (#1988595)
I don't know if it is Crohn's. It appears to actually be caused by a bacterium.
   4. Boots Day Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:25 PM (#1988660)
Yes, terminal in this case means it's at the end of his intestine, not at the end of his life.
   5. Russ Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:36 PM (#1988708)
Do I win a free tote bag for guessing this one?
   6. Grunthos Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:39 PM (#1988714)
[google search doctor]

Apparently, terminal ileitis refers to a variety of inflammatory infections of the lower bowel. Crohn's is the chronic variant... Helton would not be diagnosed with Crohn's without the infection lasting for quite some time. There are varying levels of severity. Treatment may involve surgery, or be limited to steroids/anti-inflammatories/dietary changes.

[/google search doctor]

Interesting. No way to know at this point how badly this will impact his career. He may end up with a temporary infection and no long-term effects, or (at the other extreme) severe Crohn's and a crippling impact on his ability to play baseball.
   7. Russ Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:39 PM (#1988716)
BTW, I'm really glad this seems to be nothing too serious.
   8. Russ Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:45 PM (#1988736)
BTW, I'm really glad this seems to be nothing too serious.

And, of course, by not too serious, I mean not immediately life threatening. Crohn's seriously sucks, but treatment for it exists. I think after going through what he went through, Helton will see being able to play baseball again as icing on the cake.
   9. base ball chick Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:48 PM (#1988749)
from medicine.net

Definition of Terminal ileitis

Terminal ileitis: Crohn's disease, a chronic inflammatory disease of the intestine involving only the end of the small intestine (the terminal ileum). Crohn's disease affects primarily the small and large intestines but which can occur anywhere in the digestive system between the mouth and the anus. Named after Burrill Crohn who described the disease in 1932. The disease often strikes persons in their teens or early twenties. It tends to be chronic, recurrent with periods of remission and exacerbation. In the early stages, It causes small scattered shallow crater-like areas (erosions) called aphthous ulcers in the inner surface of the bowel. With time, deeper and larger ulcers develop, causing scarring and stiffness of the bowel and the bowel becomes increasingly narrowed, leading to obstruction. Deep ulcers can puncture holes in the bowel wall, leading to infection in the abdominal cavity (peritonitis) and in adjacent organs Abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and weight loss can be symptoms. Crohn's disease can be associated with reddish tender skin nodules, and inflammation of the joints, spine, eyes, and liver. Diagnosis is by barium enema, barium x-ray of the small bowel, and colonoscopy. Treatment includes medications for inflammation, immune suppression, antibiotics, or surgery.
   10. RichRifkin Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:58 PM (#1988776)
Dan Lee,

I'm interested in your "sic." Although the article only listed a single "diagnosis" for Helton, perhaps he did in fact receive (plural) diagnoses, but conditions other than his acute terminal ileitis were not made public? Or maybe it was a mistake, as your "sic" (which, btw, is pronounced SEEK, not SICK) implies. I don't know.
   11. Darren Posted: April 25, 2006 at 11:59 PM (#1988780)
I sure hope they expalined his prognosis before springing the word "terminal" on him. Jeez, that would scare the heck out of me.
   12. Mattbert Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:01 AM (#1988791)
Surgery for treatment of Crohn's is pretty rare, I think; particularly if it's diagnosed early, as it appears to have been in Helton. It's typically something you try to manage through diet and medication.

It really f*cking sucks, though. My roommate during my sophomore year of college had it.
   13. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:08 AM (#1988812)
I'm interested in your "sic." Although the article only listed a single "diagnosis" for Helton, perhaps he did in fact receive (plural) diagnoses, but conditions other than his acute terminal ileitis were not made public? Or maybe it was a mistake, as your "sic" (which, btw, is pronounced SEEK, not SICK) implies. I don't know.

Yeah, I don't know either.

Since there was only one diagnosis mentioned in the article, I'm assuming it was a mistake - otherwise, it'd be like writing a headline that says "Helton Receives Awards", then only mentioning one award.

For Helton's sake, I certainly hope there weren't more diagnoses that weren't made public.
   14. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:32 AM (#1988898)
I'm interested in your "sic." Although the article only listed a single "diagnosis" for Helton, perhaps he did in fact receive (plural) diagnoses, but conditions other than his acute terminal ileitis were not made public? Or maybe it was a mistake, as your "sic" (which, btw, is pronounced SEEK, not SICK) implies. I don't know.


I'd have to assume it was a mistake. It's unlikely the reporter knew of a second (or more) diagnosis but opted not to include it. It's even less likely the headline writer (who may not have even had contact with the writer) would have known of that. In either case, it would be a mighty strange way to reveal that information.
   15. Rob Base Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:34 AM (#1988905)
Yes, terminal in this case means it's at the end of his intestine, not at the end of his life.

they really need to change the name of that disease. I got a major lump in my throat from the excerpt.
   16. Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:38 AM (#1988922)
Good point, Rob. I'll change the blurb up top.
   17. The Keith Law Blog Blah Blah (battlekow) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 12:39 AM (#1988928)
which, btw, is pronounced SEEK, not SICK

You can definitely pronounce it both ways. I would opt for SICK so as not to appear pretentious.
   18. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: April 26, 2006 at 01:10 AM (#1989042)
Isn't it true that Chron's is something that has many degrees of severity, and isn't it also something that can come and go depending on many factors?

My wife was diagnosed with Chron's in 1990, just before she turned 30, and it was absolutely brutal on her for the first few years, at one point forcing her to withdraw from graduate school. But since about 1994, it's been (knock on wood) remarkably under control, even though she spent most of 1998 and 1999 in a remote village in Burkina Faso, where the water conditions were classic Third World.

They did prescibe steroids for her at first, and she still takes them during an occasional flareup, but if she's any barometer of what Chron's can do to a person, I'd say that although it's just a nasty, nasty ailment, it's entirely possible to live a more or less normal life with it. Though I'm certain that one's general outlook on life has much to do with how one copes.
   19. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: April 26, 2006 at 03:00 AM (#1989449)
I feel absolutely awful for Todd Helton, especially since I know that this is my fault. Every time I sign a player to a long-term contract in my TRHL league, something happens to make me regret the contract. I just feel really bad for Todd that he got caught in the cross-fire in my long-running feud with the man upstairs.
   20. Law Boy Posted: April 26, 2006 at 04:30 AM (#1989754)
Thanks for the definition, baseball chick.
   21. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 04:31 AM (#1989759)
They did prescibe steroids for her at first, and she still takes them during an occasional flareup,
We need to asterisk her.
   22. sasquatch83 Posted: April 26, 2006 at 05:40 AM (#1989857)
Ironically, the terminal ileum is where a lot of the body's B12 absorbtion takes place (I'm pretty sure that's an accurate statement). So Helton, in addition to any other medications, steroids, antibiotics, etc., will probably be taking B12 shots as well.

I wonder if he's going to get them from Miguel Tejada...
   23. sasquatch83 Posted: April 26, 2006 at 05:42 AM (#1989860)
*correction my last post - Helton would take B12 shots if he had a part of the terminal ileum removed, which is a possibility if the condition is chronic.
   24. NTNgod Posted: April 26, 2006 at 08:01 AM (#1989901)
Denver Post: Safe at home: Helton recovering

Rockies first baseman Todd Helton could return to the lineup as soon as May 5 now that his stomach ailment has been diagnosed as acute ileitis, an inflammation of the small intestine.
...
He will be kept on a bland diet as a precaution, but as soon as he regains his strength he will resume working out, according to Rockies trainer Keith Dugger. Helton was not available for comment and has no immediate plans to issue a statement, according to Rockies spokesman Jay Alves.

Because the specific cause of his illness was not determined, the Rockies plan to monitor Helton closely for any recurring symptoms to make sure it's not a chronic problem.

The acute inflammation, which by definition implies Helton was well before being hospitalized Friday with severe abdominal pain, can be the result of infection or food-borne illness such as salmonella.
   25. Foghorn Leghorn Posted: April 26, 2006 at 01:05 PM (#1989983)
I traded David Ortiz for him in fantasy baseball. Not turning out well.
   26. RP Posted: April 26, 2006 at 01:31 PM (#1989995)
<u>Mister High Standards</u> Posted: April 26, 2006 at 09:30 AM (#1989860)

Helton should just suck it up and take some pepto.
   27. Mr. Hotfoot Jackson (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 06:30 PM (#1990449)
He may end up with a temporary infection and no long-term effects, or (at the other extreme) severe Crohn's and a crippling impact on his ability to play baseball.

i blame my own case of crohn's for its crippling impact on my ability to play baseball. the fact that i could never hit for crap, except for one glorious summer (that, looking back, accounted for 85.7 percent of my lifetime hits in 5 seasons of playing little league) at age 12, has to be some sort of pernicious side effect of the condition.
   28. Mr. Hotfoot Jackson (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 06:44 PM (#1990479)
Isn't it true that Chron's is something that has many degrees of severity,

totally. as i wrote in the first thread on helton's health problems (for which <u>i</u> must take the blame, lowenstein apathy club, since i drafted him for my gf's fantasy team -- i think i also had john kruk when he lost that testicle, & brett butler when he was diagnosed with cancer, & i traded curt schilling for carlos perez at the precise moment in '97 or so when he was diagnozed with being a talentless criminal), i was diagnosed with crohn's in 8/88 (about 3 1/2 weeks before my 29th birthday) but have what appears to be a very mild case. i think i've missed 2-3 days of work from flare-ups (would've been more, though, if i hadn't been working nights during most of the '90s, since for whatever reasons onset seemed to occur early in the day), & it's rare when the episodes of pain last an entire day, much less 2.

that's not necessarily a walk on the beach, i guess, but it beats the heck out of the dose a former co-worker of mine back home came down with about 6 years ago. he would've been about 39 (2 days older than me, in fact, which makes him 1 day older than tim raines, but i digress), & he wound up spending well over a month in the hospital, coming fairly close to dying, & being put on all sorts of steroids. how he's fared since then, i dunno.

biggest impact on me is that i can't drink anything carbonated or alcoholic, can't eat nuts, have to dial back on spicy foods every now & then, avoid anything fried to a large extent, etc. of course, that's all probably good for me, anyway. (losing, oh, 150 lbs wouldn't hurt, either, but hell, i couldn't even lose weight back when i was a vegan & running every day.) i used to take some sort of prescription pill every day, but haven't done so since probably 2000.
   29. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 26, 2006 at 06:46 PM (#1990485)
I believe this is what President Zachary Taylor died of. Of course, medicine is a bit better now than in the 1850.
   30. studes Posted: April 26, 2006 at 11:21 PM (#1991494)
You can definitely pronounce it both ways. I would opt for SICK so as not to appear pretentious.

And it's Primer with a short i, dangnab it! Anything else is just paint.
   31. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: April 27, 2006 at 01:37 AM (#1991888)
I don't know about the "sic" anyway. Diagnoses is the plural of diagnosis. (like hypotheses)

I liked this explanatory sentence from the article:

Acute terminal ileitis is inflammation that specifically localizes to the end of the end of the intestine.

If it was just the end of the intestine, it would just be ileitis, but it's the end of the end of the intestine, so it's terminal ileitis.

Also, "intestine" should be "small intestine".

If it was the end of the end of the end of the intestine I guess it would be ileocecal valvitis.

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