Dr Marín-Jiménez and colleagues explored the perception of patients and gastroenterologists specialized in inflammatory bowel disease on the impact of psychological factors on inflammatory bowel disease course and its management.
Online surveys were sent to patients with inflammatory bowel disease recruited from a national patient association and inflammatory bowel disease specialists recruited from a national scientific society.
These surveys were based on the results of a focus group and discussion group that explored the psychological aspects of inflammatory bowel disease.
Descriptive statistical analyses were performed, and the physicians' responses regarding impact and management were compared with those of a random patient sample.
|28% declared that they perceived health professionals to not be interested in psychological aspects|
|Inflammatory Bowel Disease|
Responses were obtained from 170 physicians and 903 patients.
Most patients emphasized the impact of psychological aspects, namely anxiety and depression, related to suffering from inflammatory bowel disease, with 28% declaring that they perceived health professionals to not be interested in this area.
The research team found that a third of the physicians declared not feeling qualified to detect psychological problems.
Although 50% of doctors stated that they regularly enquire about these aspects in their clinics, the patients perceived that this was done only 25% of the time.
The team observed both groups agreed on the need of a psychologist in inflammatory bowel disease care teams.
Dr Marín-Jiménez's team concluded, "A discrepancy exists between physician and patient perceptions of the impact of psychological aspects in inflammatory bowel disease, with patients perceiving higher impact and more under treatment than physicians".
"Given the influence of these aspects on patient well-being, it seems advisable to enrich professionals' training, improve the clinical management of psychological aspects of inflammatory bowel disease, and probably include psychologists in inflammatory bowel disease care teams."