Fatigue and its associated factors in microscopic colitis

Kane JS1, Irvine AJ2, Derwa Y2, Ford AC3. Author informationTherap Adv Gastroenterol. 2018 Sep 13;11:1756284818799599. doi: 10.1177/1756284818799599. eCollection 2018.

1 Leeds Gastroenterology Institute, 4 Floor, Bexley Wing, St. James's University Hospital, Beckett Street, Leeds LS9 7TF, UK.

2 Leeds Gastroenterology Institute, St. James's University Hospital, Leeds, UK.

3 Leeds Gastroenterology Institute, St. James's University Hospital, Leeds, UK Leeds Institute of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.


BACKGROUND: Fatigue is a well-recognized symptom in patients with inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome(IBS), and has been associated with psychological comorbidity and impaired quality of life in both. However, features associated with fatigue in patients with microscopic colitis (MC) are less clear.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional survey of patients with a new diagnosis of MC including levels of anxiety, depression, somatization, quality of life, and IBS-type symptoms. Levels and impact of fatigue were assessed using the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Fatigue self-assessment scale. Mean scores were compared against various patient characteristics, and were also correlated with anxiety, depression, somatization, and quality-of-life scores.

RESULTS: In total, 129 patients with MC diagnosed between 2010 and 2015 returned completed postal questionnaires. Common histological subtypes were collagenous colitis (53.5%, n = 69) and lymphocytic colitis (38.8%, n = 50). Higher mean fatigue severity and impact scores were associated with the presence of irritable-bowel-syndrome-type symptoms, abnormal levels of anxiety and depression, and high levels of somatization (p < 0.0001 for all), but those reporting ongoing symptoms attributable to MC did not report significantly higher scores. There were significant positive correlations between total anxiety, depression, or somatization scores and fatigue severity and impact scores, and significant negative correlations with quality-of-life measures (p < 0.001 for all).

CONCLUSIONS: Fatigue in MC appears to be associated with reporting IBS-type symptoms, psychological comorbidity and impaired quality of life. It may therefore represent an important target for treatment.

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