The relationship between gender, severity of disease, treatment type, and employment outcome in patients with inflammatory bowel disease in Israel

Timna Naftali, Adi Eindor-Abarbanel*, Nahum Ruhimovich, Ariella Bar-Gil Shitrit, Fabiana Sklerovsky-Benjaminov, Fred Konikoff, Shay Matalon, Haim Shirin, Yael Milgrom, Tomer Ziv-Baran, Efrat Broide

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction. Since individuals with IBD typically experience symptoms during their prime years of employment, it raises the question about IBD impact on employment status. Most studies concentrated on absenteeism from work with varying results in different populations. However, absenteeism reflects only one dimension of the ability to work and does not expose the problem of inability to hold a full-time job. Aims. To evaluate the influence of IBD on unemployment and working hours in Israel. Secondary aims were to investigate the correlation between working hours and the type of medical treatment and the impact of severity of disease. Patients and Methods. Demographic data, employment status, number of weekly working hours, and disease parameters. The data was compared to that of the general Israeli population extracted from the website of the Central Bureau of Statistics. Results. 242 IBD patients were interviewed. Patients median age was 37.04(IQR 30.23-44.68) years and 88 (36.4%) were men and 154 (63.6%) women. Diagnosis of CD was established in 167 (69%) patients and UC in 65 (26.9%). There was no significant reduction in employment rates or working hours among the IBD patients comparing to the general population. Immunosuppressive or biologic treatment did not influence employment status. The unemployed patients had higher disease severity (median 7.33, IQR 5-10.66) compared to employed patients (median 6, IQR 3.66-7.66; p=0.003). Conclusions. Although IBD patients in Israel do not have higher unemployment, those with severe disease have lower proportion of employment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5090849
JournalCanadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Volume2018
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018

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