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Possible Involvement of Avoidant Attachment Style in the Relations Between Adult IBS and Reported Separation Anxiety in Childhood.

Authors
  • Ben-Israel, Yuval1
  • Shadach, Eran1
  • Levy, Sigal1
  • Sperber, Ami2, 3
  • Aizenberg, Dov4, 5
  • Niv, Yaron6, 5
  • Dickman, Ram6, 5
  • 1 Clinical Psychology Graduate Program, School of Behavioral Sciences, Tel Aviv-Yaffo Academic College, Tel Aviv, Israel. , (Israel)
  • 2 Department of Gastroenterology, Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, Tel Aviv, Israel. , (Israel)
  • 3 Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beersheba, Israel. , (Israel)
  • 4 Department of Psychogeriatrics, Geha Mental Health Center, Petach Tikva, Israel. , (Israel)
  • 5 Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel. , (Israel)
  • 6 Division of Gastroenterology, Rabin Medical Center, Beilinson Campus, Petach Tikva, Israel. , (Israel)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Stress and health : journal of the International Society for the Investigation of Stress
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2016
Volume
32
Issue
5
Pages
463–471
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1002/smi.2642
PMID: 26033751
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in adults as well as separation anxiety disorder (SAD) and recurrent abdominal pain (RAP) in childhood are associated with anxiety and somatization. Our aim was to examine possible associations between IBS in adulthood and SAD in childhood. Patients with IBS and healthy subjects completed a demographic questionnaire, the Separation Anxiety Symptom Inventory (SASI), the Somatization Subscale of Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R), the Attachment Style Questionnaire, and a retrospective self-report questionnaire regarding RAP. Compared with controls, patients with IBS were characterized by an avoidant attachment style and scored higher on the SCL-90-R scale regarding the tendency to somatization (25.35 ± 7.47 versus16.50 ± 4.40, p < 0.001). More patients with IBS (25% versus 7.5%) reported RAP in childhood, but contrary to prediction, also had significantly lower SASI scores. Adults with IBS were characterized by somatization, insecure attachment style and recalled higher rates of RAP and surprisingly less symptoms of SAD in childhood. Based on these results, an etiological model for IBS is suggested, in which an avoidant attachment style and a tendency to somatization play an important role in the development of IBS. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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