Fatigue and Pain Are Most Challenging Symptoms for IBD Patients, Survey Shows

Fatigue and Pain Are Most Challenging Symptoms for IBD Patients, Survey Shows
The often invisible symptoms of chronic fatigue and abdominal pain are what most affect the ability of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients to function daily, a recent survey found. More than half of survey respondents also said they were initially misdiagnosed, and many reported repeat doctors' visits before an accurate diagnosis. The online survey titled, “IBD in America 2017,” conducted by Health Union from Jan. 3–Feb. 13, polled 4,092 IBD patients in the U.S., including people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (UC). Results reveal that misdiagnoses are more common than previously thought. Many patients struggle to find an effective treatment, although they are hopeful that more therapeutic options will be made available in the future. Being diagnosed with IBD remains challenging: Some 57% of respondents said they were misdiagnosed before receiving an accurate IBD diagnosis. Of these, 31% said they were initially diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). One in 10 said they were misdiagnosed with UC instead of Crohn’s disease. And 62% said they visited the doctor at least five times before being accurately diagnosed. “I think many IBD patients are initially diagnosed with IBS because symptoms aren’t severe enough to do more extensive testing,” Marisa Lauren Troy, a patient advocate, said in a press release
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