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Influence of inflammatory bowel disease on different dimensions of quality of life

Casellas, Francesca; López-Vivancos, Josefab; Badia, Xavierc; Vilaseca, Jaimea; Malagelada, Juan-Ramona

European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology: May 2001 - Volume 13 - Issue 5 - p 567-572
Original Article: Inflammatory bowel disease

Objective To establish the impairment of different dimensions of quality of life in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Design Prospective observational study.

Participants 289 patients [160 with ulcerative colitis (UC) and 129 with Crohn's disease (CD)].

Measures Health-related quality of life was assessed by means of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Questionnaire (IBDQ) and the Psychological General Well Being Index (PGWBI).

Results In active IBD, all dimensions of the quality of life scored significantly lower than in inactive IBD, indicating a poor quality of life. Social impairment was the least impaired dimension of the IBDQ in active UC and CD, compared with digestive and systemic symptoms. In inactive IBD, the systemic symptoms domain received the lowest score (P < 0.01). In a subgroup of 22 patients studied before and after remission, emotional function was the most impaired dimension after achieving remission. The Psychological General Well Being Index was significantly impaired in active UC [78.5 (range 64–89)] and CD [76.5 (range 69–97)] relative inactive IBD [104 (range 93–111)] vs 106 (95–113), respectively;P < 0.05].

Conclusions Quality of life is impaired in IBD. During relapse, clinicians should pay attention to digestive symptoms and psychological distress. In remission, they should be sensitive to systemic symptoms.

aDigestive System Research Unit, Hospital General Vall d'Hebron, bInternal Medicine Service, Hospital General de Catalunya, and cInstitut de Salut Pública de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain

Received 2 July 2000

Revised 3 August 2000

Accepted 8 November 2000

This work was supported by a grant from Fondo de Investigaciones Sanitarias (98/0427) de la Seguridad Social of Spain.

Correspondence to Dr Francesc Casellas, Digestive System Research Unit, Hospital General Vall d'Hebron, Pso. Vall d'Hebron 119, Barcelona 08035, SpainTel/fax: +34 93 428 18 83

© 2001 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.