Danielle and Joe are both IBD warriors and permanent ileostomates. They’re comedians, speakers, advocates. Two best friends without buttholes!
Danielle has had Ulcerative Colitis for over twenty-five years. After going through about every IBD medication available, going to the bathroom twenty to twenty-five times per day, and having a toilet installed in her car, she finally kicked her diseased colon to the curb in 2007. Upon high-fiving every nurse, doctor, and surgeon on the way to the operating room, she had a full proctocolectomy with end ileostomy. Her ostomy (and her stoma named Stella) saved her life, changed her life for the better, and gave her back her life!
In addition, Joe has been living with Crohn’s Disease for over twenty-five years. Like Danielle, he has run the gamut of medical treatments and medications. He has had a total of three intestinal surgeries and two resections. For the last surgery in 2012, he underwent a total proctocolectomy with end ileostomy. His last surgery landed him a spot alongside Danielle in the “Barbie Butt” Club! What’s that you ask? Two cheeks, no hole, that butt is just for show! Due to Joe’s extensive surgeries, he has lost all but approximately five feet of his small intestine and has Short Bowel Syndrome.
When Joe and Danielle met through an ostomy support group, they realized that they not only had a similar health journey, but also shared the same sense of humor and positive outlook on life. Soon after they met, “Double Baggin’ It” was born! “Double Baggin’ It” is their vehicle to spread awareness and advocate for patients living with inflammatory bowel diseases and ostomies.
Danielle and Joe are delighted to be Patient Champions on the 11 Health team! They are excited to use their humor, wisdom, and stories to connect with and support other people living with ostomies.