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P154. Quality of life (QoL) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): The caregiver's perspective

K. Argyriou1, A. Kapsoritakis1, E. Tsakiridou2, S. Potamianos1, 1University Hospital of Larissa, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Larissa, Greece, 2University of Thessaly, Medical School of Larissa, Larissa, Greece


IBD are chronic relapsing conditions of the gastrointestinal tract that cause various changes in the daily life of the patients and of their family caregivers as well [1]. However, the effect of those changes on QoL has been extensively studied only for the patients, leaving caregivers in the margin, despite that caregiving can be stressful and may contribute to serious illness and distress [2,3]. Aims of our study are to determine caregivers' QoL and to study the effect of sociodemographic and clinical characteristics on their QoL.


Data were collected from the gastroenterology departments of the tertiary referral centre for IBD in Central Greece over a period of 17 months. Caregivers who were >65 years old, illiterate or had been suffering from any chronic debilitating disease were excluded from the study. QoL was measured with the Greek validated version of SF-36 questionnaire. Sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of the study population were also collected. Statistical analysis was performed with SPSS 17.0.


One hundred and five IBD caregivers (48.4±12.3 years, 63.3% females, 78.09% first degree relatives, 59.04% high education, 20.9% unemployed) were recruited in the study. 59.04% of the caregivers were providing services on patients with active disease of moderate severity that was firstly diagnosed >5 years prior to our study. Caregivers experienced low QoL levels as shown in Table 1.

Among caregivers female sex, residence in rural areas, increased disease duration and disease severity were significantly correlated with low SF-36 mental domains scores whilst high educational level and employment status were significantly correlated with higher SF-36 score in the domains of emotional role functioning and of mental health.

Table 1. Caregivers' SF-36 Dimensional Score
Physical functioning64.6730.19
Physical role functioning62.3836.30
Bodily pain65.7729.40
General health59.0721.79
Social role functioning36.6735.31
Emotional role functioning47.2233.46
Mental health37.6727.97



  1. Family caregivers of IBD patients have impaired QoL;
  2. Gender, Place of residence, Educational level, Employment status and Disease duration and severity has significant effect on caregivers' QoL;
  3. Interventions targeting caregiver's mental health are expected to improve their QoL.

1. E Nurmi, J Haapamäki, E Paavilainen et al., (2013), The burden of inflammatory bowel disease on health care utilization and quality of life. Scand J Gastroenterol Jan; 48(1): 51–7.

2. WN Gray, DM Graef, SS Schuman, et al, (2013), Parenting stress in pediatric IBD: relations with child psychopathology, family functioning, and disease severity. J Dev Behav Pediatr May; 34(4): 237–44.

3. AM McCombie, RT Mulder, RB Gearry., (2013), Psychotherapy for inflammatory bowel disease: A review and update. J Crohns Colitis Dec 15; 7(12): 935–49.