Introduction Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Chronic Rhinosinusitis (CRS) are two of the most commonly reported complaints at health care systems and have a great negative impact on quality of life and health status of the population and actually related to many frustrating comorbidities, but there is not a clear relationship has been established between them before. Many people can suffer from both diseases without seeking medical care to know the underlying cause of their chronic illness, so this study is considered one of the turning points that assessed the relationship between both disorders, thus both physicians and patients could take that into consideration while dealing with either IBS or CRS complaints.
Method In a case-control study design, a convenient sample of 133 medical students at Suez Canal University – Egypt, were involved. Fifty students were identified as cases with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) diagnosis; using Rome III criteria, and 83 healthy students as controls. Both cases and controls were subject to an assessment of the history of chronic rhinosinusitis symptoms; using European Position Paper on Rhinosinusitis and Nasal Polyps (EP3OS) criteria.
Results The study included 44 female students with IBS (88%) and 50 female students (60.2%) without IBS, while males represented 6 (12%) of IBS cases and 33 (39.8%) of controls [p = 0.001]. The results revealed a statistically significant association between IBS and CRS [p < 0.001] with an odds ratio of 17.8 [95% CI: 4.9–64.2]. Stratified analysis was performed to adjust for gender [adjusted odds ratio = 16.5 [95% CI: 4.2–64.4]. No statistically significant difference in the mean age between case and control groups [mean age: 21.4 ± 1.47 and 21.7 ± 1.38 years, respectively].
Conclusion The study successfully concluded the presence of a relationship between IBS and CRS, and proved that the risk of a CRS patient getting IBS is about 17 times more than non CRS one getting IBS. All gastroenterologists and otolaryngologists and even general practitioners must be aware of the presence of this relationship and the possibility of the presence of CRS in a patient with IBS and the presence of IBS in CRS patient, So work-up for both disorders should be done in case of the presence of one of them to avoid the cumulative burden on the patient–s health and economic status. However, it should be investigated further to give a clue for management and prevention of these common health problems.
Disclosure of interest None Declared.