Attitudes towards antidepressants among people living with inflammatory bowel disease: an online Australia-wide survey

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Background and aims: Little research has been conducted on antidepressants (ADs) in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) despite their widespread use and evidence that they may improve immunoregulatory activity. The present study aimed 1) To explore the use and type(s) of ADs currently prescribed to people living with IBD and to collect evidence with respect to any observed effect of ADs on the course of IBD, and 2) To explore experiences and opinions regarding
the effect of ADs on IBD course and attitudes towards future trials with ADs.
Methods: A cross-sectional exploratory Australia-wide online survey was conducted. Numerical results of the survey were summarised using descriptive statistics and open-ended questions using a simple content analysis. Results: Overall, 98 IBD respondents participated in the survey, 50% with Crohn's disease, and 79% females. Sixty five (66%) participants reported current and 46 (47%) reported past AD use. Of the current AD users, 51 (79%) reported that the symptoms ADs were prescribed for improved. Psychological well-being improved in 87% of participants. The majority of respondents observed no change in IBD activity while on ADs, however, 16 (25%) believed that ADs improved their IBD.
Most (84%) respondents would recommend ADs to other people living with IBD, and 81% reported willingness to participate in clinical trials with ADs. Conclusions: Future clinical trials on ADs are warranted and likely to be accepted by people
living with IBD in need of mental health care; however, it is yet unknown whether ADs will have a specific impact on long-term IBD activity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-303
JournalJournal of Crohn's & colitis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2014

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