Anxiety, depression and psychotropic medication use in patients with persistent upper and lower gastrointestinal symptoms

L. A. S. van Kerkhoven, L. G. M. van Rossum, M. G. H. van Oijen, E. M. Witteman, J. B. M. J. Jansen, R. J. F. Laheij, A. C. I. T. L. Tan

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Abstract

Background: Limited information is available about anxiety, depression and psychotropic medication use in patients referred for gastrointestinal endoscopy. Aim: To determine anxiety and depression and its association with endoscopic findings in a representative sample of patients with persistent gastrointestinal symptoms prior to endoscopy. Methods: Patients referred to the hospital for endoscopy between February 2002 and February 2004 were asked to score anxiety and depression on the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale 2 weeks prior to endoscopy. Information about endoscopic diagnoses was obtained from medical files. Results: A total of 1298 subjects was studied (600 upper gastrointestinal endoscopies and 698 lower gastrointestinal endoscopies). Patients referred for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy used most psychotropic agents (24%; odds ratio = 3.1; 95% confidence interval = 2.3-4.2), especially patients with an organic abnormality when compared with patients without an organic abnormality (42% versus 8%; odds ratio = 8.6; 95% confidence interval = 5.4-14.0). Patients with colonic polyps were more anxious (odds ratio = 1.7; 95% confidence interval = 1.0-2.9) and depressed (odds ratio = 1.8; 95% confidence interval = 1.1-3.1) than other patients referred for lower gastrointestinal endoscopy. Conclusions: There is no difference in anxiety nor depression between patients with and without organic abnormalities at endoscopy. Patients with colonic polyps are more anxious and depressed than other patients referred for lower gastrointestinal endoscopy. Psychotropic medication use is highest among patients with an organic abnormality in the proximal gastrointestinal tract
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1001-1006
JournalAlimentary pharmacology & therapeutics
Volume21
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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