Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patient Experiences with Psychotherapy in the Community

Meredith R. Craven*, Sarah Quinton, Tiffany H. Taft

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


This study aimed to characterize patient expectations for integrating mental health into IBD treatment, describe experiences with psychotherapy, and evaluate therapy access and quality. Adults with IBD were recruited online and via a gastroenterology practice. Participants, 162 adults with IBD, completed online questionnaires. The sample was primarily middle-aged, White, and female. Sixty percent had Crohn’s Disease. Disease severity was mild to moderate; 38% reported utilizing therapy for IBD-specific issues. The greatest endorsed barrier to psychotherapy was its cost. Psychotherapy was perceived as leading to modest gains in quality of life, emotional well-being, and stress reduction. Participants reported a disparity between their desire for mental health discussions and their actual interactions with providers. The majority of participants (81%) stated there are insufficient knowledgeable therapists. A significant number of patients with IBD endorsed the desire for mental health integration into care. Disparities exist in reported provider–patient communication on these topics. There appears to be a dearth of IBD-knowledgeable therapists in the community.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-193
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology in Medical Settings
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 15 2019


  • Community
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • Integrated care
  • Mental health
  • Psychosocial care
  • Psychotherapy
  • Ulcerative colitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology


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