The population prevalence of Rome IV-diagnosed functional gastrointestinal disorders and their cumulative effect on health impairment is unknown.
Dr Imran Aziz and colleagues from Sweden performed an internet-based cross-sectional health survey was completed by 5,931 of 6,300 general population adults from 3 English-speaking countries.
The team used quota-based sampling to generate demographically balanced and population representative samples with regards to age, sex, and education level.
The survey enquired for demographics, medication, surgical history, somatization, quality of life, doctor-diagnosed organic gastrointestinal disease, and criteria for the Rome IV functional gastrointestinal disorders.
|Functional gastrointestinal disorders in multiple regions was associated with worse mental/physical quality of life|
|American Journal of Gastroenterology|
The team made comparisons between those with Rome IV-diagnosed functional gastrointestinal disorders against non-gastrointestinal and organic gastrointestinal disease controls.
The number of subjects having symptoms compatible with a functional gastrointestinal disorder was 2,083 compared with 3,421 non-gastrointestinal and 427 organic gastrointestinal disease controls.
The researchers found that the most frequently met diagnostic criteria for functional gastrointestinal disorders was bowel disorders, followed by gastroduodenal, anorectal, esophageal and gallbladder disorders.
On average, the 2,083 individuals who met functional gastrointestinal disorders criteria qualified for 1.5 functional gastrointestinal disorders diagnoses, and 742 of them qualified for functional gastrointestinal disorders diagnoses in more than one anatomic region.
The presence of functional gastrointestinal disorders in multiple regions was associated with increasing somatization, worse mental/physical quality of life, more medical therapies, and a higher prevalence of abdominal surgeries.
The researchers noted that individuals with functional gastrointestinal disorders in multiple regions had greater somatization and worse quality of life than organic gastrointestinal disease controls.
Dr Aziz's team concludes, "Roughly a third of the general adult population fulfils diagnostic criteria for a Rome IV functional gastrointestinal disorders."
"In a third of this subset multiple gastrointestinal regions are involved and this overlap is associated with increased health impairment."