Abstract

Development of Irritable Bowel Syndrome Features Over a 5-year Period

Clevers E1, Tack J2, Törnblom H3, Ringström G3, Luyckx K4, Simrén M5, Van Oudenhove L2. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2018 Mar 3. pii: S1542-3565(18)30231-3. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2018.02.043. [Epub ahead of print]
 
     

Author information

1 Translational Research Center for Gastrointestinal Disorders (TARGID), University of Leuven, Belgium; Dept of Internal Medicine & Clinical Nutrition, Institute of Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden. Electronic address: egbert.clevers@kuleuven.be.

2 Translational Research Center for Gastrointestinal Disorders (TARGID), University of Leuven, Belgium.

3 Dept of Internal Medicine & Clinical Nutrition, Institute of Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.

4 Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, School Psychology and Child and Adolescent Development, KU Leuven.

5 Dept of Internal Medicine & Clinical Nutrition, Institute of Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; Center for Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS: There are few data from longitudinal studies of the gastrointestinal and psychologic features of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). We studied within-person correlations among features of IBS, along with progression of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms and quality of life, and factors associated with changes over time.

METHODS: We performed a longitudinal study of 276 patients with IBS in Sweden (70% female; ages, 19-76 years) who completed questionnaires, each year for 5 years, about their GI symptom severity, quality of life, GI-specific anxiety, general anxiety, depression, and coping resources. We performed within-person correlation analyses, latent class growth analysis, and random-intercept cross-lagged panel analysis.

RESULTS: Within-person correlations with GI symptom severity were strongest for quality of life (r=-0.56) and GI-specific anxiety (r=0.47). Progression of GI symptom severity was defined based on 3 classes; the class with the highest mean levels of GI, depression, and (GI-specific) anxiety symptoms at baseline did not improve over the 5-year period, contrary to the other classes. GI-specific anxiety was associated with an increase in GI symptom severity and decrease in quality of life 1 year later (P<.05) but other features of IBS were not.

CONCLUSIONS: In a 5-year study of patients with IBS in Sweden, we found 3 classes of GI symptom development. We found levels of GI-specific anxiety to associate with GI symptom severity and quality of life 1 year later. Clinicians should be aware of GI-specific anxiety in patients with IBS, to identify patients at risk for lack of long-term symptom improvement with standard medical treatment.

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