MS and Crohns disease


Just wondered - does anyone know if there is a connection between MS and Crohn's disease?  Are the two not mutally exclusive?  Just a thought as I am seriously wondering if Crohns could be a possiblity with me (long story) but continuing bowel problems have put a stop to my life at the moment. Had a spinal MRI yesterday so am hoping for some answers soon. Still a limbolander. Thanks Dianne

Ive been reading articles lately and i came across a dr who believes that bacteria in the gut are responsible for a number of conditions including crohns and MS. This however would not be the first time someone has tried to connect MS to something. Her name is Dr natasha campbell mcbride, google it, she has a lot to say about this and when you listen to it, kinda makes a lot of sense. There are lots of theories ive heard for MS, many convincing, this one is making it into my top 3, ha cant believe i have a top 3.... man im sick of this s**t. Anyway, its there to be read and for you to decide on your own what you believe

Hi Dianne,

I believe there is a connection, but I’m not sure it has anything to do with the “bacteria in the gut” theory. Both are auto-immune conditions, and may share certain common characteristics, which are not yet fully understood. I think I’m right in saying that MS and Crohn’s cluster in families more commonly than would be expected by chance alone, which is suggestive of a common genetic basis. This is true of some other auto-immune diseases too.

I think some treatments used for Crohn’s have also shown some promise as treatments for MS - again suggesting there’s some common mechanism.

I have both MS and Crohn’s in the family, but on opposite sides. Tragically, and very unusually, the person with Crohn’s died of it, at a relatively young age. The person with MS lived to be 87.

If you had to pick which one you were going to get, you’d assume MS was the more dangerous, wouldn’t you? But it just goes to show you can’t always tell.


Hi Dianne,

MS and Crohns are both autoimmune conditions and there are many suggestions that autoimmune conditions are in some way linked or that there's a common denominator between some of them.

There's no one in my family with ms other than me, but other family members do have different autoimmune conditions, so I'm sure there is a link there somewhere but what that is remains to be seen at the moment.

Bowel problems can also be another symptom associated with ms so if you haven't already mentioned it to your neuro then it's definitely worth doing so.

Good luck with the tests - I hope they start to shed some light on things for you.

Debbie xx      

Hi all

Just wanted to say thanks for all your replies, all very interesting.  It's a strange journey this trip through limboland and I really feel that I'm 'educating' myself an awful lot regarding MS and autoimmune disorders.  I will mention bowel problems to my neuro, when I'm next lucky enough to get access to him, as he is not aware of how bad things have deteriorated in recent months.  I keep a log of everything fortunately.  Thanks to everyone for reading and for your continued support.  Best wishes to all Dianne x

Hi Dianne,

I'm not dx yet, but have lots of MS type symptoms. I have had Ulcerative Colitis for approx 11 years now, this is similar to Crohns. I also think (and have read somewhere too) that there is a connection between Crohns/Colitis and MS.

When I spoke to my GP about this, he said that he's never heard of anything so far....I don't think the professionals like you to tell them stuff that you've found out too much!



Hi Dianne,

If your neuro appt is a way off and things are getting decidedly worse then why not give his secretary a call - see if they can bring your appt forward. MRI results don’t normally take that long to come through so hopefully he’d be able to give you those at the same time.

It might just get things moving a bit faster.

Good luck

Debbie xx

Hi Debbie

Yeah, a good idea and I will see if I can get an earlier appointment but am slightly nervous, as at last visit my neuro told me quite categorically that if the MRI comes back clear then there is nothing else he can do and that will be 'goodbye'.  Charming.  I also find his secretary a bit officious which can put me off calling as well!

I will fight my corner, although you shouldn't have to, and ask for a re-consideration or second opinion.  Last time I saw him he did do a physical exam and found that my balance was shocking and eye focus very slow and signs of babinski reflex but when he wrote to my GP he said that he had found nothing abnormal.  I believe the 'system' lets limbolanders down an awful lot.  It's hard to be believed when every test or exam comes back as 'normal'.  It's probably wrong to say this but I am hoping that something is found on the spine MRI if only to prove that I'm not going mad!

Thanks again and best wishes to all


I think most people think that way Dianne. Not because they want to have something wrong but because then they'd at least know that there's a reason why they feel so cra*p. The 'not knowing' is the worst feeling ever.

It didn't take that long for me to be diagnosed and for that I'm thankful because I felt like I was losing grip too. Whatever way I look at limboland or receiving a dx it seems to be a double edged sword.

Keep chipping away at it Dianne & if necessary push for a 2nd opinion.

Fingers crossed for you

Debbie xx