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HannahLeigh89 posted:
I know that Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis usually disqualify you for military service, but I was wondering if anybody knew any stories of people with IBD serving in the military. My father was in the Navy for four years, but it was prior to his diagnosis of UC. I have always thought that being in the military would be very rewarding, as I would greatly like to travel the world and learn as much about other places as I can. I'm going into nursing, so I would be in the medical part as an officer in most branches, so I don't know if they have different requirements as enlisted do or not. I am most interested in joining the Air Force or Navy. Any stories or advice on the subject would be greatly appreciated!
AzJohnny responded:
Hi Hannah, I have friends that are medical military and law (JAG) military and they had to go through a somewhat reduced version of officer training which is the officers version of basic training. The last I heard, doctors are officers but not all nurses are. If it's still true that not all nurses are officers, I don't know what "basic" they have to go through. It can't hurt to find out. Hope you're feeling better every day. :smile:
Chronie2001 responded:
Hannah, congrats on your decision to go into nursing, i wish you lots of luck since it can be very stressful, which i hope doesnt cause you more problems with your disease. I am retired from the navy, which i think my Crohn's may have started while i was still in service. any way.. If you have a degree, you are almost guaranteed to go in as an officer. most nurses are of the officer rankings. the best thing for you to do is talk to a recruiter to get all the info you will need to make the best decision. it has been 11 years since i have retired, but i know there have been some changes, so i cant be of much more help. but talking to a Recruiter would be your first stop. and dont let them sign you right there on the spot unless you have everything you want in writing!!
JustininGA responded:
Hannah, I was already in the military when I was diagnosed with UC. I was not put out because of it, and I'm currently deployed to Afghanistan. The doctors said if I was responding to medication I would be able to deploy. I haven't had any problems, but I believe it has been more because of the diet I'm on than the medication. I am on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, and it has done wonderful things for me. I don't experience any symptoms at all as long as I stick to the diet. It has been hard to find stuff to eat here sometimes, but my wife cans food for me that's on my diet, and mails it to me which has helped tremendously. Usually, people are eyeing what I'm eating when they're eating chow hall food! Anyway, I don't know if it's a disqualifying thing for you to get in, but I do know that you're not automatically put out because of it, so it wouldn't make much sense to me for it to be a disqualifying factor as long as you're not experiencing any symptoms that would prevent you from doing your job. I would definitely look into it, don't give up! God Bless, Justin

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