Health-related quality of life is impaired in those patients with functional gastrointestinal disorders who are seen in referral centers.
In this study, doctors evaluated the health-related quality of life in subjects with functional disorders in the community. They also assessed whether any differences in quality of life could be explained by psychological co-morbidity.
The team interviewed subjects who reported either symptoms of dyspepsia or irritable bowel syndrome, as well as healthy controls.
Subjects' also completed a number of psychological measures, and the Medical Outcomes Study 36-item short form health survey (SF-36).
The doctors evaluated 112 cases and 110 controls.
Before adjustment, the team found that irritable bowel syndrome was negatively associated with patients' physical composite score. However, following adjustment, they determined that this association was explained by the Symptom Checklist-90 somatization score.
The team also found that irritable bowel syndrome and dyspepsia were negatively associated with the mental composite score.
This association remained even after adjusting for psychological covariates, but it was no longer significant for irritable bowel syndrome.
Dr Halder's team concluded, "In the community, health-related quality of life is impaired in subjects with irritable bowel syndrome and dyspepsia".
"However, much of this association can be explained by psychological factors".