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SAM AND SASKIA MADISON

by Jennifer Tormo Summer 2013 Also on Digital Edition

Children with Crohn's get misdiagnosed as anorexic because they're refusing to eat. Well, genius, It's too painful to. - Saskia Madison

Saskia Madison sometimes says “I’m fine” before she uses the restroom. Other times, though, she isn’t fine. The wife of former Miami Dolphins cornerback Sam Madison, Saskia has Crohn’s disease. An incurable inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s complicates every aspect of her life down to her lunch order – she requests salads without lettuce because her body is too reactive to the plant. At its worst, the disease can send her running to the bathroom with bleeding episodes seven to eight times a day. At its best? “The problem with Crohn’s is there could be 2 percent of problems lingering and you’ll still be miserable,” the former pharmacist explains. Saskia, 40, has lived privately with the disease for 16 years, surreptitiously taking four to eight pills a day and concealing the flare-ups that cause her body to rage. The couple will raise money for Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America as they run their first half-marathon, the Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon, this summer. “I get very sick, but quite honestly, when I was practicing I saw so many people [with Crohn’s] who looked a lot worse than me,” she says. Her first step in helping them: running 13.1 miles this summer in the hopes that someday, somebody will find a cure. – Jennifer Tormo