Chronic fatigue in patients with unexplained self-reported food hypersensitivity and irritable bowel syndrome: validation of a Norwegian translation of the Fatigue Impact Scale
Ragna Lind,1 Arnold Berstad,2 Jan Hatlebakk,1,3 Jørgen Valeur2
1Department of Medicine, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, 2Unger-Vetlesen Institute, Department of Medicine, Lovisenberg Diakonale Hospital, Oslo, 3Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
Background: Patients with unexplained self-reported food hypersensitivity and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) suffer from several health complaints, including fatigue. The aim of the present study was to validate a Norwegian translation of the Fatigue Impact Scale (FIS), and to assess the impact of fatigue in patients with self-reported food hypersensitivity and IBS, as compared with healthy controls.
Methods: Thirty-eight patients with unexplained self-reported food hypersensitivity and IBS, who participated in the validation of the FIS completed the following additional questionnaires: the Short Form of Nepean Dyspepsia Index for assessment of quality of life, the Subjective Health Complaint Inventory, and questionnaires for diagnosis and severity of IBS. Impact of fatigue was studied in 43 patients with unexplained self-reported food hypersensitivity, 70% diagnosed with IBS, and 42 healthy controls.
Results: Cronbach's α for the FIS was 0.98, indicating excellent agreement between individual items. Scores on the FIS correlated with scores on the Short Form of Nepean Dyspepsia Index (r = 0.50, P = 0.001), indicating good convergent validity, and were higher in patients (median 85.0, interquartile range 36.8–105.3) than in controls (median 14.0, interquartile range 3.0–29.0, P ≤0.0001).
Conclusion: The Norwegian translation of the FIS performed excellently in patients with unexplained self-reported food hypersensitivity and IBS, with patients reporting significantly more impact of chronic fatigue than healthy controls.
Keywords: irritable bowel syndrome, fatigue, food hypersensitivity, quality of life
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