Although colonoscopy is rarely of clinical use in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), it is, nonetheless, frequently performed in IBS.
Proponents contend that a normal colonoscopy provides reassurance and improves health-related quality of life
However, no previous data have measured these effects.
Dr Brennan and his colleagues from California sought to measure the association of a normal colonoscopy with reassurance and health-related quality of life.
The research team retrospectively evaluated 458 patients with IBS, aged 18 to 49 years.
Subjects completed a symptom questionnaire.
The Symptom Checklist psychometric checklist, and the Short Form Health Survey were used.
|The SF-36 physical component score was 45 in patients with distant colonoscopy |
The main outcomes were health-related quality of life as measured by the mental component score and the physical component score of the short form-36
The team also assessed reassurance as operationalized by a negative response to the question; “Do you think there is something wrong with your body?”
The research team determined that the independent variable was presence or absence of a previous normal colonoscopy.
The team performed regression analysis to control for potential confounders, including timing of colonoscopy.
The unadjusted mean short form-36 physical component score was 42 in patients with recent colonoscopy,
The team found that the physical component score was 45 in patients with distant colonoscopy.
The researchers noted that the unadjusted mean short form-36 physical component score was 45 in patients without colonoscopy
The mean short form-36 mental component score in the 3 groups were 42, 44 and 43, respectively.
Colonoscopy did not impact the proportion
There were no significant differences between groups for any outcomes
Dr Brennan and his team concluded, “There is no independent association between a negative colonoscopy and reassurance or improved health quality of life in IBS patients aged less than 50 years.”
“These results suggest that the role of colonoscopy in IBS may be limited but require confirmation in prospective trials.