Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Any CFer that is pancreatic insufficiency knows nobody in their right mind would give enzymes a bad review. I do believe it is important to review them though because of an event that happened about 8 months ago.

As someone with a late diagnosis, but not a late onset of symptoms I know how miserable life can be without enzymes. I wasn't diagnoses until I was a teen (LONG story), but had all the symptoms growing up. I grew up spending much more time of the John than necessary and getting really bad stomach aches. I am also forever scarred away from certain high fat foods such as any cream sauce, donuts, and anything cheesy. Eww the thought of those foods makes me cringe because of the high fat content they would reek havoc on my gut growing up and so I avoided them at all costs. My stomach knots at the thought of eating those foods even though now my enzymes can easily digest these foods. But I digress.

Back to my review of enzymes! For 12 years I used Creon MT20 enzymes to help digest my food. It was amazing how much better I felt and how much less time I spent on the John! I grew a significant amount after enzymes and lost the emaciated look. I was fine 80% of the time, but every few months I would get bathroom issues. I was never sure why because I am 100% compliant with enzymes. I was never sure the trigger, but once my gut was off I would have issues for about a week. NOT fun!!

Fast forward to earlier last year. Creon was pulled off the market and I was switched to Zenpep. The first 2 months were a nightmare and not having a fun time! I was hoping and wishing that Creon would get FDA approved and come back to put me out of my misery. Then after a few months something amazing happened! My stomach issues went away and I felt better than ever. I have been using Zenpep for 8 months now and have had NO stomach issues or random bad days.

All CFers that need Enzymes require different amounts of Lipase, Amylase, and Protease. Enzymes are not one size fits all. So I am not in anyway saying Zenpep is a superior enzyme. The point is that because we are all different you should never settle for an enzyme that isn't doing a GREAT job. I didn't know any better and compared to no enzymes I felt great with Creon. The ratio of enzymes in Creon worked well for me, but it wasn't exactly right. If you are having gut issues then maybe you need a new enzyme OR a different ratio of your current enzyme.

As always, be your own advocate and stand up for your health. Your Dr does not have to live with the stomach aches or the frequent trips to the bathroom, but he/she will work with you if you are unhappy with a current med/enzyme. Don't settle for just okay because we deserve much more than just okay.

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