Analysis of modifiable psychosocial risk factor in patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (IBD)

ulcerative colitis Crohn's disease Ehealth

prof. dr. G. Dijkstra
dr. M.J. Schroevers

Nature of the research:
Analysis of long term follow of eHealth data from IBD patients

Fields of study:
health psychology gastroenterology

Background / introduction
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) includes Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, two chronic inflammatory conditions of the gut. Clinical presentation of both diseases is heterogeneous at diagnosis and variable over time. IBD poses a significant and persistent burden on patients’ lives, not only physically, but also on their mental well-being. Early introduction of additional (psychological) treatment might be justified in patients at risk for disease progression, fatigue and psychosocial problems. Identifying risk profiles and patient factors associated with these profiles, might be useful in the timely identification of patients that could benefit from an early treatment approach. With the current study, we aim to investigate the prevalence and interrelationship between various psychological- and disease-related outcomes over time in IBD patients.
Research question / problem definition
1) Investigate the prevalence and development over time of various disease-related and psychological outcomes in IBD patients
2) Identify different psychosocial risk profiles over time across a wide range of outcomes
3) Explore demographic, clinical and lifestyle characteristics associated with distinct patient profiles (e.g. disease activity, disease duration, treatment adherence, diet, smoking, live events).
Within this project, you will work with data obtained in regular clinical care, using the tool MijnIBDCoach. MijnIBDCoach is a telemedicine system developed to monitor disease activity, other disease-related variables, and psychosocial functioning in IBD patients (e.g. fatigue, sleep quality, quality of life, stress, anxiety, depressed mood, shame, disturbed sexuality, impaired work functioning and social support). This longitudinal dataset includes around 400 patients that have been followed for over 5 years. Within the overall research aims, you will be able to choose your own sub-questions (e.g. define specific outcome, certain associations etc.). To answer your research questions, you will learn and perform basic and advanced statistical methods (e.g. latent class growth analyses, multivariate latent profile analyses).
1. Taft TH, Ballou S, Bedell A, Lincenberg D. Psychological Considerations and Interventions in Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patient Care. Gastroenterol Clin North Am. 2017 Dec;46(4):847-858. doi: 10.1016/j.gtc.2017.08.007. Epub 2017 Oct 3. PMID: 29173526; PMCID: PMC5726536.
2. Klusmann B, Fle0er J, Tovote KA, Weersma RK, van Dullemen HM, Dijkstra G, Schroevers MJ. Trajectories of Fatigue in Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2021 Mar 26:izab007. doi: 10.1093/ibd/izab007. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33769489.
3. de Jong MJ, van der Meulen-de Jong AE, Romberg-Camps MJ, Becx MC, Maljaars JP, Cilissen M, van Bodegraven AA, Mahmmod N, Markus T, Hameeteman WM, Dijkstra G, Masclee AA, Boonen A, Winkens B, van Tubergen A, Jonkers DM, Pierik MJ. Telemedicine for management of inflammatory bowel disease (myIBDcoach): a pragmatic, multicentre, randomised controlled trial. Lancet. 2017 Sep 2;390(10098):959-968. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)31327-2. Epub 2017 Jul 14. PMID: 28716313.
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