Common bowel disease may increase your risk of mental problems

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In a new study, researchers found inflammatory bowel disease is linked to an increased risk for psychiatric disorders and suicide attempts.

The research was conducted by a team from the Karolinska Institutet.

In the study, the team examined the risk for psychiatric disorder and suicide in people with inflammatory bowel disease patients using data from a population-based cohort study in Sweden (1973 to 2013).

The analysis included 69,865 inflammatory bowel disease patients versus 3,472,913 general population controls and 66,292 siblings.

The researchers found that during a follow-up of 11 years, there were 10.7% first psychiatric disorders in inflammatory bowel disease patients versus 9.9% in the general population, resulting in 1.8 extra psychiatric morbidities per 100 patients.

The highest risk for overall psychiatric morbidity was seen during the first year after the inflammatory bowel disease diagnosis. Patients with extraintestinal manifestations also had a higher risk for psychiatric morbidity.

All inflammatory bowel disease types were linked to an increased risk for suicide attempts, while completed suicide was particularly associated with Crohn disease and elderly-onset inflammatory bowel disease (diagnosed at age >60 years).

The team says psychological follow-up should be provided to patients with inflammatory bowel disease, especially those with extraintestinal manifestations and elderly-onset inflammatory bowel disease.

This follow-up should transpire within the first year after inflammatory bowel disease diagnosis.

The study is published in the Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis. One author of the study is Jonas F. Ludvigsson, M.D.

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