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Am J Gastroenterol. 2001 Oct;96(10):2915-20.

Health-related quality of life in Crohn's disease: a prospective longitudinal study in 231 patients.

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Service d'Hépato-Gastroentérologie, CHU, Lille, France.



The aim of this work was to assess the quality of life (QoL) of patients with Crohn's disease (CD) prospectively over 1 yr and to determine factors of influence.


A total of 231 CD patients were included. At month 0 (M0), M3, M6, M9, and M12, patients were given a validated QoL questionnaire (self-administered) to fill in and a clinical form referring to the period of 3 months before the visit. The QoL questionnaire was made up of the Short-Form-36 and the Rating Form of Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patients Concerns. The impact on QoL of the following factors was analyzed: age, gender, CD duration and localization, presence of extradigestive manifestations or concomitant disease, disease course, medical treatments, and surgery. We studied the correlations between QoL and disease activity assessed by both patients and investigators by a visual analog scale.


At M0, all the scores of the Short-Form-36 were significantly lower than those of a standard population, nevertheless improving between M0 and M12. Patients' main worries were first "having an ostomy bag" followed by "uncertain nature of the disease," "energy level." and finally "having surgery." QoL was better correlated with assessment of disease course by the patient than by the investigator. Significant factors of impairment in QoL were female gender, tobacco, active CD, involvement of the colon, hospitalization, corticoid treatment, and surgery in the past 3 months. Conversely, intake of immunosuppressors improved QoL.


Patients' QoL is impaired by CD and is underestimated by doctors. Tobacco, hospitalization, and use of corticoids have a negative impact on QoL. Conversely, the use of immunosuppressors is associated with a better QoL.

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