Assessing the coping ability of children newly diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease through psychiatric measures
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The emotional approach to disease is an active process that impacts significantly on disease outcomes in patients with chronic diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). The study outlined in this manuscript is a prospective, longitudinal, cohort study assessing the coping strategies manifest by both children who have been recently diagnosed with IBD and their parents. This pilot study aims to identify how cognitive modifiers, including anxiety, depression, and quality of life, change over time and ultimately impact the course of their underlying chronic disease. To date, 78 patient-parent dyads have enrolled in the study and provided baseline data, and 37 of those dyads have provided follow-up data one-year post-diagnosis. Data is being generated in this study by completing previously validated surveys that assess mental health, quality of life, and disease state. Our data show a significant increase in the Health-Related Quality of Life of children with IBD one year after their diagnosis and a significant decrease in the frequency that parents report being impacted by their child’s diagnosis. As the study continues, a greater sample size will enable a more definitive assessment of more and less adaptive coping strategies and lead to the development of targeted interventions to support emotionally at-risk IBD patients and their parents.