Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a chronic, costly, and burdensome disease that is typically diagnosed during adolescence. Despite the use of effective treatments, rates of relapse and intestinal inflammation remain high and put patients at risk for long term physical and psychosocial health complications. Given the costs associated with IBD, it is critical to examine potential risk factors of poor health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among patients for the enhancement and further development of interventions. As such, the aim of the current study was to examine how sociodemographic and disease characteristics, psychosocial problems, and adherence behaviors impact HRQoL among a sample of youth with IBD. 107 adolescents with IBD and their caregiver completed self- and parent-report measures as part of a psychosocial screening service. Medical records were reviewed to obtain information regarding diagnosis, insurance, medication use, illness severity, and disease activity. Results revealed lower HRQoL scores among adolescents with more psychosocial problems (Est. = -3.08; p < .001), greater disease severity (Est. = -.40; p = .001), and those who identified as Black (Est. = -.38; p < .05). Greater disease severity (Est. = .13 p = .004), use of nonpublic insurance (Est. = .32 p = .004), and fewer psychosocial problems (Est. = -.13 p = .04) were associated with greater adherence behaviors. These findings suggest that implementing individually tailored, evidence-based psychological interventions focused on coping with psychosocial problems and symptoms may be important in enhancing adherence behaviors and HRQoL among adolescents with IBD.
Keywords: health-related quality of life; inflammatory bowel disease; psychosocial problems.