Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are intestinal diseases perceived differently by patients and doctors.
IBD is considered an "organic" disease, while IBS is a "functional" disorder. The impact of these diseases on patients' health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is perceived to be very different.
In this study, investigators from Europe and the United States compared HRQOL, psychological profile, and perceived burden of stressful life events in IBS and IBD patients.
The team evaluated 80 patients with IBD (26 with ulcerative colitis and 54 with Crohn's disease), and 85 controls with IBS.
They compared the results of 3 questionnaires completed by the patients.
|Health-related quality of life was reduced in both IBS and IBD patients.|
|Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology|
The investigators found that HRQOL was similarly reduced in both disease groups.
Furthermore, the severity of psychological symptoms did not differ between the 2 patient groups.
The team found that the severity of recent stressful life experiences was perceived to be higher in the IBS patients, compared to the IBD patients.
Dr Pace's team concluded, "Patients with IBS show health-related quality of life, psychological distress and recent occurrence of stressful life events of severity at least comparable with age-matched IBD patients".