Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis tied to anxiety and depression

Published 12 Jan 2016

Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis tied to anxiety and depression
Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis – both gastrointestinal diseases – have been tied to anxiety and depression. In a previous study researchers found that not only is Crohn’s disease tied to depression but that depression can increase inflammatory flare-ups related to Crohn’s.
The study involved 3,150 Crohn’s patients who completed online questionnaires in regards to their disease, treatment and its affect on their daily lives. Patients were also asked how often they felt sad, hopeless, or worthless.
Patients with high depressions scores were 50 percent more likely to experience a Crohn’s flare-up after 12 months compared to those with the lowest depression scores.
Even after researchers adjusted for other factors depression still remained to be linked with Crohn’s flare-ups.
Lead author Lawrence Gaines said, “Our study suggests that feelings of sadness and thoughts of helplessness, hopelessness and worthlessness can affect the risk of disease flares in people with Crohn’s disease. For these patients, what they think about themselves may be related to a very real medical outcome.”
The researchers note the importance of doctors talking to their patients about depression and depression-like symptoms as it could have a negative impact on the patient’s disease and overall health.
Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis increases anxiety disorder risk
Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitisAnother study found that Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis could increase the risk of anxiety disorders. Lead author of the study, Esme Fuller-Thomson, said, “Patients with IBD face substantial chronic physical problems associated with the disease. The additional burden of anxiety disorders makes life much more challenging so this ‘double jeopardy’ must be addressed.”
For the study researchers looked at 269 Canadian adults diagnosed with inflammatory bowel diseases. The researchers found that those diagnosed with inflammatory bowel diseases were two times more likely to experience generalized anxiety disorder at some point in their lives compared to adults without a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis. Furthermore, the risk was seen to be four times higher in women compared to men.
Study co-author, Joanne Sulman, added, “The study draws attention to the need for routine screening and targeted interventions for anxiety disorders. Particularly among the most vulnerable patients with IBD: women, individuals who are in chronic pain, and those with a history of childhood sexual abuse.”
Assistant professor Patrick McGowan concluded, “We sometimes think of the two as if they are entirely separate entities but the reality is they are intimately linked. Both involve genuine physical changes in the body and affect each other.”

Bel Marra Health


on 15/01/2016

My husband has ulcerative colitis, at Xmas we called in to see his sister, she said something bad about one of my children, an adult now. My sister in-law is 80 ish I did not reply to her, my husband caught my eye, we made our excuse and left he knew I was upset. Next morning he had a flare-up and bled when he opened his bowel

mr chipps • Ambassador
on 19/01/2016

Ulcerative colitis, is a disease like many others. it can be controlled by drugs, but sadly there is no know cure. i t to me is like a monster hiding and waiting to pounce without very much warning. everyone who is living with it can tell their own stories about it, and how it has affected their lives, be it restricting them and making movement outside at times almost impossible. i have lived with it for over a decade and at the moment am in remission, however i have to monitor it every day of my life, because it can flare up without much notice. it due to its medicational needs can affect other parts of your life, because it can make your immunity lower, leading people becoming more vulnerable to other disease and infections, such as URTI, which are not only painful but often hard to get over. to anyone who has Ulcerative Colitis, i send my deepest and best wishes, for speedy recovery , if flare up occur!!

on 20/01/2016

i suffer with ulcerative collitis and a few days after Christmas  ate a Bacon Sandwich when out for a day, Wow for the next 5 days I  was so ill.I was staying at my daughters and didn't dare leave the house. the trouble is if you eat something which upsets your stomach with  UC  it takes longer to get over it than a normal person and it can be so debilitating and frightening. I have been suffering for about 15 years and I am shortly going in to hospital to have numerous polyps removed. I am hoping that this will help. Anyone suffering with UC has my sympathy.

mr chipps • Ambassador
on 20/01/2016

Hi B.Tazzini 

 i hope that you are soon well again, a well as having to live with U.C i also have irritable bowel and an inscisional hernia from previous heart surgery, which affects my digestion and gives me lots of discomfort.

have you considered you may have an irritable bowel. i like you am getting to the stage, when i am having to question what foods i can eat, without causing myself to be unwell?

on 21/01/2016

Hi Mr Chipps 

Thanks for your reply , I started off with irritable bowel which progressed to Ulcerative collitis. Yes foods do  have a great effect and I do find I cannot tolerate white bread. The only bread that helps is Oatmeal and very few shops stock it. I do find a teaspoon of dessicated coconut each day helps. Also I have cut out eating any skin on fruit /potatoes etc. I also find I can eat Berry fruits but not apples peaches oranges and suchlike. Peas are definitely a no go too.I get away with picolo tomatoes but can't eat ordinary larger tomatoes. Another awful side effect is explosive wind, some of which is blamed on omeprazol which I take daily. I have been offered a colostomy but that really would be a last resort as they say it would be total and not reversable.

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