Prevalence and impact of disorders of Gut–Brain interaction in Sweden

Navkiran Thind Tornkvist, Magnus Simrén, Jóhann P. Hreinsson, Jan Tack, Shrikant I. Bangdiwala, Ami D. Sperber, Olafur S. Palsson, Axel Josefsson, Hans Törnblom

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Scopus citations


    Background: Previous epidemiologic studies in Sweden have only covered some of the disorders of gut–brain interaction (DGBI) and are not representative of the general population. This study aimed to define the prevalence and impact of DGBI in Sweden. Methods: We used Swedish data from the Rome Foundation Global Epidemiology Study which include information on DGBI diagnoses, psychological distress, quality of life (QoL), healthcare utilization, and the impact of stress on GI symptoms. Key Results: The prevalence of having any DGBI was 39.1% (95% CI 37.0–41.2); esophageal disorders 6.1% (5.1–7.3), gastroduodenal disorders 10.7% (9.3–12.0), bowel disorders 31.6% (29.6–33.6), and anorectal disorders 6.0% (5.1–7.2). Subjects with a DGBI more commonly reported anxiety and/or depression, reduced mental and physical QoL, and more frequent doctor visits due to health problems. Subjects with a DGBI reported bothersome gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms to a greater extent and more than 1/3 had visited a doctor due to GI problems and of those 1/3 had seen multiple doctors. Prescription medications were available among 36.4% (31.0–42.0) who had bothersome GI symptoms and a DGBI, with sufficient symptom relief in 73.2% (64.0–81.1). Psychological factors and eating were reported to worsen GI symptoms and stress during the last month was greater in subjects with a DGBI. Conclusions and Inferences: DGBI prevalence and its impact in Sweden is in line with global data, including increased healthcare utilization. GI symptoms are commonly affected by psychological factors and eating, and a high proportion of those on prescription medication report sufficient GI symptom relief.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere14578
    JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
    Issue number6
    StatePublished - 1 Jun 2023


    • Sweden
    • disorders of gut–brain interaction
    • epidemiology
    • healthcare utilization
    • psychological symptoms
    • quality of life
    • somatic symptoms

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
    • Gastroenterology
    • Physiology


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