Abstract

Similarities in Clinical and Psychosocial Characteristics of Functional Diarrhea and Irritable Bowel Syndrome With Diarrhea

Singh P1, Lee HN1, Rangan V1, Ballou S1, Lembo J1, Katon J1, McMahon C1, Friedlander D1, Iturrino J1, Nee J1, Lembo A2. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2019 Aug 20. pii: S1542-3565(19)30895-X. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2019.08.020. [Epub ahead of print]

 
     

Author information

Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA.

Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA. Electronic address: alembo@bidmc.harvard.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS: There have been few published studies of clinical and psychological characteristics of patients with functional diarrhea (FDr). We studied the clinical and psychological characteristics of patients with FDr presenting to a tertiary care clinic, and compared symptom profiles of FDr with those of IBS-diarrhea (IBS-D).

METHODS: Consecutive patients with a diagnosis of FDr (n=48) or IBS-D (n=49), per Rome IV criteria, completed a detailed symptom survey from October 2017 through July 2018. Abdominal pain and diarrhea severity were assessed using patient-reported outcomes measurement information system (PROMIS) questionnaires. Patients with anxiety, depression, or sleep disturbances were identified based on PROMIS T-score of 60 or more. Mean and proportions were compared using the Student t test and χ2 analyses, respectively.

RESULTS: A significantly lower proportion of patients with FDr reported abdominal pain (77.1%) than patients with IBS-D (100%, P<.001). The proportion of patients reporting abdominal bloating and level of severity did not differ significantly between groups. Proportions of bowel movements with diarrhea did not differ significantly between groups (P=.54), but the mean diarrhea PROMIS T-score was significantly higher among patients with IBS-D (P=.03). This difference resulted from the significantly higher levels of fecal urgency-related distress reported by patients with IBS-D (P=.007). Proportions of patients with anxiety, depression, or sleep disturbance, and their severities, did not differ significantly between groups.

CONCLUSIONS: In an analysis of about 100 patients with FDr or IBS-D, we found overlap in gastrointestinal and psychosomatic symptoms. These 2 entities appear to be a continuum.

© Copyright 2013-2019 GI Health Foundation. All rights reserved.
This site is maintained as an educational resource for US healthcare providers only. Use of this website is governed by the GIHF terms of use and privacy statement.