The Famous Faces of IBD

Patient Expert
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Lately, tons of celebrities are speaking out about their chronic conditions. Most recently, Selena Gomez and Lady Gaga. These celebrities are champions of their conditions and being praised for sharing their strength. But, did you know, there are also many famous people with IBD? From celebrity chefs to actresses and rock stars, inflammatory bowel disease touches the lives of the famous. In this slideshow, you’ll learn about 10 IBD badasses, who didn’t let their IBD stop them in pursuit of their dreams.


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Amy Brenneman

She’s starred in NYPD Blue and Grey’s Anatomy among other credits. Amy is a successful actress who battles ulcerative colitis (UC). She’s pretty active with the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation and she’s extremely open about her story with IBD.

Image: Wikimedia


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Dwight D. Eisenhower

Yep, even our 34th president had Crohn’s disease. Eisenhower kept his diagnosis pretty quiet during his time in office, but underwent surgery for ileitis. How cool is it that a leader of the United States was still able to lead the country while battling Crohn’s disease?


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Sunny Anderson

A superstar celebrity chef on shows like The Kitchen on Food Network, Sunny Anderson also struggles with UC. She was diagnosed at age 19, but she hasn’t let her UC stop her from being an amazing chef.


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Chuck Lorre

The funny man, himself — he also suffers from UC. The creator of the hit TV show Two and a Half Men was diagnosed in 1976 with colitis. But while Lorre was traveling around as a musician, he moved forward with his love for comedy and wound up writing some pretty hilarious shows. They say IBD can give you a good sense of humor — and Lorre has certainly proven that.

Photo: Wikimedia


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Shannen Doherty

You might know her from Charmed and Beverly Hills 90210. Shannen Doherty is an awesome actress who also deals with Crohn’s disease. Doherty follows the pattern Amy Brenneman lays out by being extremely vocal about her life with Crohn’s. She talks about the good and the bad of the disease and shares her story on her Instagram.

Photo: Wikimedia


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Mike McCready

He’s the guitarist for legendary grunge band Pearl Jam. He’s been living with the duo of both Crohn’s and colitis for about 25 years now. McCready also joined the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation to help spread awareness about IBD. And he learned a lot from them, too, on how to manage his disease.


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Pete Davidson

Pete Davidson is a regular on SNL, and he battles Crohn’s disease. As of late, Davidson has been a huge advocate for medicinal marijuana to help with IBD symptoms. He attributes being able to perform on SNL to his medicinal marijuana use.


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Cynthia McFadden

Cynthia McFadden is an award-winning journalist and news anchor — and a Crohnie. She’s been open about her condition to her friends, family, and has spoken out about gastroenterologists not treating their patients with respect. She’s laid some amazing groundwork for women in journalism, and has tackled a lot in addition to her IBD.


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Gregory Itzin

Gregory Itzin served as president … well, on TV for the drama 24. While he served in this role, he was battling ulcerative colitis. He’s become a spokesperson for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation and he’s been the voice of IBD public service announcements and talks about the habits he’s adopted to help improve his symptoms.


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Frank Fritz

You might recognize Frank from American Pickers on the History Channel. He’s been dealing with Crohn’s for 32 years now. During the filming of American Pickers, Fritz had an RV follow him around so he’d always have access to the bathroom. He’s also an advocate for awareness for IBD and is part of a support group in Iowa.