I was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease almost 5 years ago. I am 27 years old and after seeing numerous doctors and given multiple treatments that were pointless, I finally received a correct diagnosis for my Crohn’s disease. Perianal Crohn’s. My symptoms are localized in the anus. Stricture, ulcers, fissures, itchiness, bleeding, pain when going to the bathroom, discharge. Occasionally, I will have nausea or diarrhea but that really is only if I eat a very rich, unhealthy meal or drink a lot of alcohol. I definitely do not have cramps or diarrhea all the time like a lot of Crohn’s patients do. I developed an abscess 3 months ago and after it drained a superficial fistula formed. My colorectal surgeon did a fistulotomy and I’m currently waiting for it to completely heal. We knew it would take longer than normal since that area is so inflamed from the Crohn’s disease. My colorectal surgeon had been treating the area with cortisone shots and anal dilation. He says this is a more “unconventional” method of treatment but it was giving me relief. However, I had to move across the country and as much as I loved my doctor I can’t afford to fly back and see him for injections every 3 months. I’ve been in the process of seeing multiple colorectal surgeons to find a treatment plan I am comfortable with. Most doctors will not do what my doctor was doing with steroid shots. I started metronidazole cream applied to the area 2 times a day and in the new year will possible start oral metronidazole for my perianal Crohn’s. I am terrified of taking medication long term. I am so hesitant to take antibiotics for an indefinite amount of time but even more opposed to immunosuppressants (remicade/humira etc). I am worried about the side effects. I also am scared that without medication I will have to get an ostomy because the area will become even worse. I plan on seeing a nutritionist about changing my diet and lifestyle to eliminate as much inflammation in my body. I am hopeful that can give me relief but at the same time I’m not confident that could be enough to put me in remission. Does anyone else struggle with perianal Crohn’s and have the same symptoms? What treatments have worked for you? I am curious to hear from other people with the same struggles as me. I feel hopeless right now.