- Fecal Incontinence
|Pediatric inflammatory bowel disease and the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on treatment adherence and patients' behavior
Pediatr Res. 2021 Jan 14. doi: 10.1038/s41390-020-01312-6. Online ahead of print.
Lev Dorfman 1 2, Raouf Nassar 3 4, Dalit Binjamin Ohana 3, Ilan Oseran 3, Manar Matar 3 5, Raanan Shamir 3 5, Amit Assa 3 5
Background: The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic affects medical care worldwide, including patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Thus, we aimed to assess its impact on health care provision, fear of infection, adherence to medical treatment, and compliance with preventative instructions in children and adolescents with IBD.
Methods: A cross-sectional telephonic survey using a Likert scale-based questionnaire was conducted among all pediatric patients with IBD from a single tertiary medical center.
Results: A total of 244 pediatric patients with IBD were included in the study, reporting a high rate of fear of severe COVID-19 infection due to IBD or IBD medications (198, 81.1%). Most of the patients obeyed the Ministry of Health instructions (228, 93.4%), while almost 50% took additional protective measures including avoidance of school and complete lockdown. Concerns regarding the attendance of regular clinics (116, 47.5%) and emergency room in case of IBD exacerbation (178, 73%) were frequently reported. Only 7 patients (2.9%) changed or discontinued their IBD treatment due to COVID-19.
Conclusion: We noted several distinct features of the COVID-19 pandemic effect on pediatric patients with IBD including a high rate of fear of severe COVID-19 infection, fear of attending necessary medical facilities, and high rate of avoidance of social activities.
Impact: Pediatric patients with IBD have a high rate of fear of severe COVID-19 infection, fear of attending necessary medical facilities, and a high rate of avoidance of social activities. Medication adherence rate in pediatric patients with IBD during the pandemic is similar to the adherence rate among adults with IBD. Almost 50% of pediatric patients with IBD took additional protective measures including avoidance of school and voluntary lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic.