8 Citations (Scopus)


Rationale: Data on the prevalence of mental distress among adult eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) patients are scarce. Also, a significant gap remains in the understanding of which determinants are related to significant psychological symptoms and whether distressed patients require and receive mental care. Methods: Adult EoE patients were invited to complete standardized measures on anxiety/depressive symptoms (HADS) and general psychopathology (SCL-90-R). All scores were compared to general population norms. Socio-demographic and clinical factors were assessed. Results: In total, 147 adult EoE patients (61% males, age 43 (IQR 29–52) years were included (response rate 71%). No difference with general population values was found for total anxiety and depressive symptoms (7.8 ± 6.6 vs. 8.4 ± 6.3; p = 0.31). A total of 38/147(26%) patients reported high levels of anxiety and/or depressive symptoms (HADS-A ≥ 8: 35/147(24%) and HADS-D ≥ 8: 14/147(10%)), indicative of a possible psychiatric disorder. In a multivariate analysis, age between 18–35 years was independently associated with high levels of anxiety (HADS-A ≥ 8) (OR 3.0, 95% CI 1.3–6.9; p = 0.01). The SCL-90-R Global Severity Index (GSI) was significantly higher compared to the general population (p < 0.001). Significant signs of general mental distress (GSI ≥ 80th percentile) were observed in 51(36%) EoE patients, of which 29(57%) patients denied having any mental problems and only 8(16%) patients received mental care. Conclusion: A considerable proportion of adult EoE patients suffers from mental distress, with a 3-fold risk of significant anxiety in those patients younger than 35 years. Therefore, population-based studies are required and a proactive approach in the screening for and treatment of these psychological symptoms in EoE practice seems essential.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere14069
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number7
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021


  • Eosinophilic esophagitis
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • mental care
  • mental distress

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