Background & Aims: Bile acid diarrhea (BAD) affects approximately a quarter of patients with irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea (IBS-D). We aimed to compare the demographics, bowel and somatic symptoms, and quality of life of patients with IBS-D, with or without BAD. Methods: On one occasion, patients with IBS-D (positive for Rome III criteria) completed the following questionnaires: bowel disease questionnaire, Hospital Anxiety and Depression inventory, general quality of life (Symptom Checklist-90), and IBS-specific quality of life. A fasting serum C4 level higher than 52.5 ng/mL was used as a biomarker for BAD. Statistical analysis included a multiple variable logistic model to identify strong predictors of BAD in IBS-D. Results: Among 219 patients (79% female) with IBS-D, 44 had BAD; the BAD group was significantly older and had a higher body mass index than the patients without BAD. Patients with BAD had more severe bowel dysfunction and impact on IBS-specific quality of life (need of toilet proximity) compared with patients with IBS-D without BAD. Patients with BAD were more likely than other IBS-D groups to receive antidiarrheals, bile acid binders, and antacid secretory agents. The severity of diarrhea and need of toilet proximity were predictors of BAD in IBS-D (P < .01). Patients with BAD were more likely to have a depression score higher than 8 on the Hospital Anxiety and Depression inventory. Conclusions: There is a greater impact on bowel and somatic symptoms and quality of life in IBS-D with BAD compared with IBS-D without BAD. Screening for BAD in IBS-D is especially relevant, with more severe and frequent diarrhea along with urgency.
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