Issues that Impact on Quality of Life in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

1. Body image is a major issue which influences quality of life in patients with inflammatory bowel disease. There is the fear of unsightly scars, impaired continence, stomas and psychosexual issues which result in isolation and have a major impact on social well being.

2. There is the fear of operations and the complications thereof, particularly of recurrence and of malignant disease which influences the patient's well being.

3. There is the issue of general health, particularly anaemia, malnutrition and lack of energy, which has a profound influence on quality of life.

4. Bowel function has a profound impact on quality of life, especially pertaining to uncontrollable incontinence.

5. Quite apart from the above issues, there are the psychosexual issues related to inflammatory disease as well as mental health, pain and the complications of medication.

6. The severity of bowel incontinence is closely associated with the gastrointestinal quality of life index score.

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