11 Celebrities With Crohn's Disease
Famous people with IBD
Crohn's disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that can be incredibly challenging. In Crohn's disease, a rogue immune system attacks the digestive tract, causing inflammation and tissue damage.
Crohn's disease symptoms include abdominal cramps, diarrhea, fever, and fatigue. Like many autoimmune diseases, symptoms tend to cycle, getting worse during flare-ups and then subsiding.
Here are 11 people who achieved celebrity for their deeds—not their Crohn's disease diagnosis—and how they dealt with the condition.
"They weren't going to say, 'Did you have 15 diarrhea attacks today?'" the journalist says in a 1994 People magazine interview. "So, instead, they'd ask me, 'How's George?'"
After a bout of internal bleeding in 1979, she had 15 feet of intestine removed. McFadden, who now works to raise awareness about the disease with the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA), has been mostly in remission ever since.
"Crohn's is like a duck," he told Crohn's Advocate magazine. "Ducks look calm, floating quietly on the surface of the water, but underneath they are paddling like crazy. It's the same for people with Crohn'son the outside you can't really tell, but I'm working really hard to stay in control as much as I can."
"I went public with my condition to show people that despite the disease, you can still have a life and career," he said in a statement.
"I just thought I had a stomach virus," he says in a 2005 New York Times interview. "It was three months before I asked anyone to check me out."
In 2004, doctors removed 12 inches of Garrard's intestine and put him on a treatment plan to help him regain weight and return to the gridiron. Garrard is now the spokesperson for CCFA's campaign, In the Zone for Crohn's, which raises money for research.
Mary Ann Mobley
"It is a dreadful disease for the fact that it affects so many people emotionally," she told the Saturday Evening Post in a 1994 interview. "I remember before I went into remission having a two-year-old daughter and wanting to get up to do things with her and simply not having the energy to get up from the bed and go to the sofa in the den."
Doherty told Star magazine in 1999 that she had been diagnosed with Crohn's disease. However, she has kept many of the details of her battle under wraps, reportedly claiming it's not sexy for a woman to say, "I've got to go to the bathroom right now."
Dwight D. Eisenhower
George "The Animal" Steele
Steele's fight with Crohn's disease began in 1988. He says he regained his health after a 2002 surgery to remove his colon.
In 2009, at age 67, he was elected to his fifth four-year term.
Morrison, seen on MTV's Punk'd and NBC's Last Comic Standing, was diagnosed with Crohn's in his senior year of high school.
Dineen, now coach of the Florida Panthers, tells USA Hockey magazine that the disease was "a real eye-opening experience" because there's no quick fix. "This is a chronic, debilitating disease that's with you for life," he says. "It took me a couple of years to come to grips with that."