Abstract

Impact of inflammatory bowel diseases on working life: A French nationwide survey

Le Berre C1, Peyrin-Biroulet L2, Buisson A3, Olympie A3, Ravel MH3, Bienenfeld C4, Gonzalez F5. Dig Liver Dis. 2019 Feb 11. pii: S1590-8658(19)30060-X. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2019.01.024. [Epub ahead of print]

 
     

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) affect working-age patients. Data was lacking concerning the impact on working life.

AIMS: The French IBD patient association conducted a nationwide survey to assess the burden of IBD at work.

METHODS: An online survey was performed in 2016, targeting IBD patients working or having worked previously. The results were compared to those observed in the general population.

RESULTS: Data from 1410 IBD patients were analyzed (62% Crohn's disease, 35% ulcerative colitis). Four-fifth of respondents were actively employed. Half of them stated that working with IBD was a problem. Compared to the general population, IBD employees had higher rates of permanent contracts, public employment but also of part-time contracts, and highly graduated patients were less likely to reach high qualified jobs. Among the disabling symptoms at work, fatigue was the most frequent (41%) followed by diarrhea (25%) and fecal incontinence (18%). Despite these difficulties, 76% were satisfied with their job. Most patients shared their IBD diagnosis with their colleagues, but 25% of them regretted it.

CONCLUSION: IBD has a strong negative impact on working life. While work satisfaction remains high, IBD affects career plans, highlighting the need for supporting measures to improve patients' work experience.

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