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This shocked me

As you may know, my son was diagnosed with Crohn's last year, at aged 9. He was a chubby baby, and only now in retrospect, are my husband and I realising that he's had Crohns for much longer. When my son was 4 or 5, my husband used to take him and his sister to the park to kick the footy around, and alot of times my little boy would lose his energy quick and be tired easily.

I've been going through the kids special boxes, and I've just come across some blood test results my son had when he was 3. I had totally forgotten about them, and I honestly can't remember why we had them done, it was to do with iron and full blood count, I think we had them done because he was so pale, but he was always a pale child from the beginning.

Anyway, the blood tests from when he was 3 say low in iron, low in transferrin saturation (indicating normal iron stores, but transiently lowered iron because of acute inflammation or infection?.

When I read this, I felt sick. Does this sound like an issue from when he was 3 years old? How did I not know this? And the million dollar question - what caused it? An infection of some sort that just stayed in his system? Was he born with it? It's actually very upsetting.


Staff member
I'm not sure what could've caused his low iron back then but, if you don't remember why you ordered the tests initially, perhaps you've forgotten how it was resolved??? There may have been a different reason for the inflammation/infection.

Try not to let this upset you... even if it was an early sign of crohns, his symptoms must have been so slight that there was no reason for you or his ped to ever consider crohns at that time. While I don't really believe Stephen developed crohns years ago, I could certainly look it at differently and begin to tie in lots of other little signs - he was always pale/very fair skinned (sometimes hard to tell he was pale or 'normal'!), always very thin, always very small appetite, always preferred low residue/fibre foods, etc., etc.

I have no doubt that you always followed up any signs of any illness and could have done nothing differently... :ghug: :ghug:
My 8 yr old son was dx'd in March after getting sick in Jan. If I think of the little things that may have indicated he had Crohn's prior to Jan, I can trace it back to when he was about 3 yrs old. Things like unexplained skin rashes and frequent constipation. But neither we, nor the dr connected the dots, and it really wouldn't have changed anything in the end anyway. I have read that a person can have precursor signs of Crohn's up to 7 yrs before actually getting the full blown disease. And then it's often a trigger, like a flu (which was our case last Jan), that sets the real deal in motion.

my little penguin

Staff member
DS had signs two weeks after north - but....
you can only do with the info you have at the time.
The important thing is your child is dx now and you are treating it to the best of your ability now.
no one knows why some get crohn's versus others.
for now focus on what you CAN do to help your child.




We have the same note appearing on Sarah's blood test for 4 years prior to dx. Our GI tells us this was early Crohn's but it not something the GP would normally pick up. These notes don't mean much when you don't know what you are looking for.

You like I have other children, and if there are signs with our other children we will move forward much early for testing with other children. My youngest daughter is seeing a GI much early than her sister with very little symptoms.
Like the others said there are little signs we can all worry about that might or might not have pointed to Crohn's. At this point I would not worry about it there is nothing you can do about the past. My daughter was diagnosed at age 11 but she had complained of stomach aches for years before. I remember started at age 5. Her pediatrician always brushed it off saying kids get stomach aches. there is a part of me that will always wonder if that was early signs of Crohn's but we can't live in the past we just have to look toward the future.