Most studies of depression and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have been drawn from clinical populations, and from Crohn's and ulcerative colitis community organizations.
Dr Esme Fuller-Thomson and colleagues from Canada accept determined the prevalence of depression in IBD or a similar bowel disorder.
The research team assessed 2 nationally representative Canadian surveys.
The team evaluated the Canadian Community Health Survey.
From 2000 through 2001, there were 3076 respondents who reported that they had ‘a bowel disorder such as Crohn's or colitis' that had lasted more than 6 months.
The patients had been diagnosed by a health professional.
The National Population Health Survey, conducted from 1996 through 1997, had 1438 respondents who reported that they had such a condition.
Within each subsample, bivariate analyses were conducted to compare the depressed and nondepressed individuals.
Logistic regression analyses also were conducted using the Canadian Community Health Survey 1.1 data set.
|Only 40% of depressed individuals were using antidepressants|
|Inflammatory Bowel Diseases|
The team found that the 12-month period prevalence of depression among individuals with IBD and similar bowel disorders was comparable in the 2 data sets.
Depression rates were higher among female respondents.
The researchers observed that depression rates were also higher in those without partners, and younger respondents.
In addition, those who reported greater pain, and those who had functional limitations had higher depression rates.
The team noted that 17% of depressed respondents had considered suicide in the past 12 months.
A further 30% had considered suicide at an earlier time.
The team found that only 40% of depressed individuals were using antidepressants.
Individuals with IBD and similar bowel disorders experience rates of depression that are triple those of the general population.
Dr Fuller-Thomson's team concludes, “It is important for clinicians to assess depression and suicidal ideation among their patients with active IBD symptoms, particularly among those reporting moderate to severe pain.”