What is Transitioning?

It is a coordinated movement of young adults with IBD from pediatric to adult health care settings.

If you are 10-20 years old and have been diagnosed with IBD, most likely a pediatric IBD along with your primary caregiver have been working together to manage your care provider until now. When you reach adolescents or young adulthood, it is a good time to consider transitioning to an adult gastroenterologist and care team.

 

It’s also important to understand your medical disease journey and be prepared to share and discuss with the adult care team.

 

There are several factors that are important to consider when transitioning from your pediatric to an adult gastroenterologist including: acquiring knowledge, taking personal responsibility and having caregivers (parents) let go of the primary responsibility of managing your IBD.

 

MyIBD empowers the young adult by providing educational resources, link and videos. Health records and medical information can be inputted and shared.

It is interactive and easy to use.

MyIBD provides easy access to the medical journey, opportunity to share records with the new care team and empowers the young adults.

 


Adolescence and early adulthood can be times of emotional, cognitive and social transition. The time frame including adolescents to early adulthood corresponds to the peak age of onset of pediatric IBD. Approximately 20-25 percent of patients with IBD are diagnosed before 16 years of age, although onset of IBD before age 5 is rare.

 

A diagnosis of IBD comes with challenges. For many patients diagnosed with pediatric IBD, a patient’s adjustment to living with IBD will likely vary based on such factors as IBD course (e.g., chronic non-remitting versus remission) and treatment (e.g., high dose steroids, surgery), and potentially longer-term complications (e.g., growth failure).

 

 

In adolescents, when self-identity is in flux, IBD can be particularly challenging. Patients diagnosed with IBD may feel embarrassment because of fecal incontinence, have poor body image due to steroid-induced weight gain, or have social anxiety due to school absences and related loss of social learning opportunities. In addition, factors such as family and social support, degree of disruption of the patient’s usual activities, and stress, may influence how one deals with having IBD.[1] Approximately 50 percent of IBD patients experience some type of stress including family, work, school, and financial.[2]

 

 

[1] Mackner et al. Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2014 April 01.NIH-PA

 

[2] Latella G, Papi I. Crucial steps in the natural history of inflammatory bowel disease, WJG 2012;18:3790-3799.