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... Self-rated current immune functioning and perceived general health were assessed using single-item questions and rated on a scale ranging from 0 (very poor) to 10 (excellent) . Past-year immune status was assessed with the Immune Status Questionnaire (ISQ) . The ISQ is a 7-item scale assessing the frequency of experiencing sudden high fever, diarrhoea, headache, skin problems, muscle and joint pain, common cold, and coughing, on a scale ranging from never (0), sometimes (1), regularly (2), often (3) to (almost) always (4). ...
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and insomnia symptoms are often found to occur together. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between sleep and IBS complaints, and their impact on reported health and daytime functioning.
An online advertisement invited people with difficulty initiating and/or maintaining sleep to participate in an online survey. Sleep characteristics were assessed and the Birmingham IBS Symptoms Questionnaire was completed, including subscales on IBS-related constipation, pain, and diarrhoea. Perceived immune functioning and general health were self-rated and the lapses subscale of the Manchester Driver Behaviour Questionnaire was completed as a proxy of daytime functioning.
Significant associations were found between sleep symptoms and IBS-related constipation, pain, and diarrhoea reports. Most sleep variables were negatively affected in subjects reporting IBS complaints, as reflected in patients reporting poorer sleep quality and less satisfaction with their sleep pattern. The associations with sleep difficulties were most pronounced for IBS-related pain. Being a woman, of younger age, and having an insomnia diagnosis were factors that were associated with having significantly more severe IBS symptoms. The association with IBS was significant for the severity of difficulty falling asleep, but not for the severity of difficulty maintaining sleep.
There is a clear relationship between sleep, perceived health, and IBS complaints. The association with IBS complaints was significant for difficulty falling asleep, but not for difficulty maintaining sleep, which may have implications for the combined treatment of sleep difficulties and IBS-related pain.
Background and aims:
The coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic disrupted medical care of patients with chronic wounds, and in combination with other negative effects of lockdown measures, this may have a negative effect on mood and quality of life. Until now, the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and associated lockdowns for individuals with impaired wound healing have not been investigated.
An online survey was conducted to evaluate perceived immune fitness, mood, and health, both before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Of the 331 Dutch pharmacy students that completed the survey, N = 42 participants reported slow healing wounds and/or wound infection and were allocated to the impaired wound healing group; the other N = 289 participants served as control group. The survey assessed mood, perceived immune fitness, and health correlates for (a) the year 2019 (the period before the lockdown), (b) the first lockdown period (March 15-May 11, 2020), (c) summer 2020 (no lockdown), and (d) the second lockdown (November 2020-April 2021). The analysis revealed that negative mood effects, reductions in quality of life, and perceived immune fitness during the two lockdowns were significantly more pronounced among individuals that reported impaired wound healing compared to the control group. The effects on mood, perceived immune fitness, and health correlates were most pronounced for the second lockdown period.
The COVID-19 pandemic is associated with significantly poorer mood, quality of life, and reduced perceived immune fitness. These effects are significantly more pronounced among individuals with self-reported impaired wound healing.
Reduced immune functioning may have a negative impact on sleep and health, and vice versa. A survey among Dutch young adults (18-35 years old) was administered to collect information on perception of reduced immunity and its relationship to sleep disorders, sleep duration, and quality. Sleep disorders were assessed with the SLEEP-50 questionnaire subscales of sleep apnea, insomnia, circadian rhythm disorder, and daily functioning. Dutch young adults (N = 574) completed the survey. Among them, subjects (N = 209; 36.4%) reported perceived reduced immunity. Relative to those with a normal immune status, subjects reporting reduced immunity had significantly higher scores (p = 0.0001) on sleep apnea (2.6 versus 3.6), insomnia (5.1 versus 6.8), and circadian rhythm disorder (2.1 versus 2.7). Subjects reporting reduced immunity also had significantly poorer daily functioning scores (5.4 versus 7.6, p = 0.0001). No differences were observed in total sleep time, but those reporting reduced immunity had significantly poorer ratings of sleep quality (6.8 versus 7.2, p = 0.0001). Our findings suggest that perceived reduced immunity is associated with sleep disturbances, impaired daily functioning, and a poorer sleep quality. Experimental studies including the assessment of immune biomarkers and objective measures of sleep (polysomnography) should confirm the current observations.
Problematic internet use has been associated with a variety of psychological comorbidities, but it relationship with physical illness has not received the same degree of investigation. The current study surveyed 505 participants online, and asked about their levels of problematic internet usage (Internet Addiction Test), depression and anxiety (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scales), social isolation (UCLA Loneliness Questionnaire), sleep problems (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index), and their current health - General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28), and the Immune Function Questionnaire. The results demonstrated that around 30% of the sample displayed mild or worse levels of internet addiction, as measured by the IAT. Although there were differences in the purposes for which males and females used the internet, there were no differences in terms of levels of problematic usage between genders. The internet problems were strongly related to all of the other psychological variables such as depression, anxiety, social-isolation, and sleep problems. Internet addiction was also associated with reduced self-reported immune function, but not with the measure of general health (GHQ-28). This relationship between problematic internet use and reduced immune function was found to be independent of the impact of the co-morbidities. It is suggested that the negative relationship between level of problematic internet use and immune function may be mediated by levels of stress produced by such internet use, and subsequent sympathetic nervous activity, which related to immune-supressants, such as cortisol.