National Survey Finds the Majority of People with Chronic Idiopathic Constipation Generally Never Feel Well, Despite Having Sought Treatment1
Current Insights about Constipation survey reveals the disruptive impact of the condition on patients’ lives– from missing out on life’s moments to having negative feelings about living with chronic idiopathic constipation– and gastroenterologists are looking for more treatment approaches
Cambridge, Mass. – December 7, 2018 – Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPG) today unveiled results from the Current Insights about Constipation survey, providing new insights from people with chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC) and gastroenterologists that treat CIC patients. The results show that, despite having sought treatment, most people diagnosed with CIC feel their lives are negatively impacted by the condition, with the vast majority (84%) reporting that the symptoms associated with their CIC and/or its management (e.g., pain, bloating, abdominal discomfort, diarrhea) often disrupt their everyday lives.1*
There are an estimated 35 million adults in the U.S. with CIC.2,3† There are many potential causes, and one of the possible underlying problems may be an impairment or dysfunction of the gut’s ability to move, by contracting and releasing, naturally.4,5
Despite having sought treatment, approximately three in four people with CIC agree they generally never feel well (74%),1 and about the same percentage feel they are missing out on many of life’s moments (e.g., family parties, kids’ sporting events or recitals) because of CIC (71%).1 Most have negative feelings about living with the condition (92%), including frustration (69%) and stress (60%); few feel supported (11%).1‡
“Symptoms of chronic constipation can impact many aspects of daily living, from being able to go out to dinner to more profound aspects of life such as relationships and careers,” said William D. Chey, M.D., Professor of Gastroenterology & Nutrition Sciences, and Director of the GI Nutrition and Behavioral Wellness Program, Michigan Medicine, Ann Arbor. “Relieving these symptoms can be difficult. For many of my patients, therapies either don’t adequately control CIC symptoms, or come with side effects that can be as troublesome and unpredictable as the condition itself. This can leave patients feeling like they have no choice but to accept limitations on how they live.”
The national survey, conducted online by The Harris Poll from April 16 to June 6, 2018 on behalf of Shire, included 250 U.S. gastroenterologists (GIs) who saw at least 15 or more CIC patients in the past month, and 881 U.S. adults who have been diagnosed with CIC by a healthcare provider (HCP) and who sought treatment for the condition (“people with CIC” or “CIC patients”).
“While often misunderstood, chronic idiopathic constipation poses a significant burden to those affected, preventing them from fully engaging in personal and professional activities,” said Ceciel T. Rooker, President of the International Foundation for Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD). “We applaud the efforts undertaken by Shire to help uncover this burden and identify the unmet needs that still exist from both the patient and physician perspective through its Current Insights about Constipation survey.”
Additional key findings include:
- CIC Impacts Daily Living: According to the survey findings, the majority of people with CIC (75%) spend approximately one hour or more in total using the toilet per day. Nine percent cite spending approximately three to less than four hours and 10% spending approximately five or more hours on the toilet in total, on average, per day. The majority (75%) agree they often have to put their life on pause because of the condition by avoiding things like traveling, switching jobs, socializing, volunteering, and physical fitness.
- About seven in 10 people with CIC (69%) agree they often cancel or avoid plans because of the unpredictability of the condition.
- On average, people with CIC report having missed approximately seven days of work, five social events, and four events with kids in the past year due to the condition.1
- CIC has a Negative Effect on Various Aspects of a CIC Patient’s Well Being: Around half of CIC patients say the condition has negatively impacted each of the following a lot or a great deal: their self-confidence (60%), their ability to engage in hobbies they used to enjoy (59%), their romantic relationships/intimacy (54%), and their job/career or ability to work (47%).
- Roughly eight in 10 (84%) agree that no one understands the negative impact CIC has on their everyday life.1
- The Patient Journey Can Be Long: On average, CIC patients experienced CIC symptoms for nearly three years (2.7) before they were diagnosed; approximately one quarter (26%) of CIC patients made approximately five or more visits to an HCP before they were ultimately diagnosed and the majority of CIC patients (56%) reported making three or more visits to an HCP before they were ultimately diagnosed.
- For those who have used prescription and/or over-the-counter (OTC) treatments, they reported to have tried about four OTC∞ and three prescription medications^ before finding one that worked well for them. Among people with CIC who have used OTC and/or prescription treatments, approximately one-third (35%) are still trying to find a treatment that works well for them.§
- Approximately eight in 10 people with CIC (83%) feel like their CIC symptoms are just something they have to live with.1
- Treatment Side Effects can be Disruptive to Patients’ Lives: More than six in 10 people with CIC (62%) agree that the side effects of CIC treatments are sometimes worse than the disorder itself, and nearly seven in 10 (67%) say they sometimes feel they’ve traded the unpredictability of CIC symptoms with the unpredictability of their CIC medication side effects.1
- New Treatment Approaches are Needed: CIC patients (87%) and GIs (90%) wish there were more CIC treatment options. Approximately seven in 10 GIs (72%) agree that many of the current treatments for CIC available to patients generally work the same way, and about eight in 10 GIs (78%) wish they could find a different approach to treatment.1
- GIs Recognize that Motility Matters: The vast majority of GIs (95%) agree that treating the root cause of CIC may require increasing colonic motility; not just lifestyle modifications or adding water. In addition, more than eight in 10 GIs (84%) wish there was a treatment to address CIC patients’ upper GI symptoms, in addition to their lower GI symptoms.1
More about CIC
CIC, also referred to as functional constipation, is a condition characterized by difficult, infrequent or incomplete passage of stools over a prolonged period, and a range of symptoms, which may include abdominal pain and/or bloating.6 It affects approximately one in seven U.S. adults.2,3 †
About the Survey
The Current Insights about Constipation Survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll on behalf of Shire between April 16 and June 6, 2018. The patient arm of the survey included a total of 881 U.S. adults aged 18+ who have been diagnosed by a healthcare professional with CIC and who sought treatment for the condition (“people with CIC” or “CIC patients”). The professional arm of the survey included 250 GIs licensed to practice in the U.S. who have seen 15 or more CIC patients in the past month. For complete research method, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, please contact Linda Calandra, Lead, Portfolio Communications, Shire, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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* Survey participants were asked how much they agree or disagree (scale: strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, strongly disagree) with the statement: the symptoms associated with chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC) and/or its management (e.g., pain, bloating, abdominal discomfort, diarrhea) often disrupt my everyday life.
† This represents ~14% of the U.S. adult population as of July 1, 2017 Census Bureau Data.
‡ Survey participants were asked to select all that apply to describe how living with CIC makes them feel: frustrated, stressed, embarrassed, burdened, helpless, hopeless, lonely, hopeful, supported, confident, empowered, and other.
†† Data from a systematic review of 41 separate studies of adults with CIC (N=261,040 subjects).
∞ CIC patients who have used OTC medication (N=622, unweighted)
^ CIC patients who have used prescription medication (N=562, unweighted)
§ CIC patients who have used prescription and/or OTC medications (N=773, unweighted)
1 Chronic Idiopathic Constipation (CIC) Survey conducted online in the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Shire. Final Physician (N=250) and Patient (N=881) Findings. Field Period: April 16 to June 6, 2018.
2 U.S. Census Data. Available at: https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045216.
3 Suares NC, Ford AC. Prevalence of, and Risk Factors for, Chronic Idiopathic Constipation in the Community: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. The American Journal of Gastroenterology 2011;106:1582-1591.
4 Ford AC, Moayyedi P, Lacy BE, et. al. American College of Gastroenterology Monograph on the Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Chronic Idiopathic Constipation. Am J Gastroenterol. 2014;109:S2 – S26.
5 Tack J, Muller-Lissner S, Stagnhellini V, et. al. Diagnosis and Treatment of Chronic Constipation – A European Perspective. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 2011;23:697-710.
6 Lacy BE, Mearin F, Chang L, et al. Bowel Disorders. Gastroenterology 2016;150:1393–407.
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