Abstract

The management of patients with chronic conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), requires specific attention and careful planning during the transition from pediatric to adult care. Early education about the transition process and the acquisition of self-management skills are crucial to fostering independent adolescents and young adults who have the knowledge and tools to manage life with a chronic disease. A growing body of literature describes the challenges and barriers to providing adolescent and transition care. Potential barriers to effective transition include the following: differences between adult- and pediatric-onset IBD; patients' lack of developmental maturity and readiness, self-efficacy, and knowledge of the disease; poor adherence to therapy; adolescent anxiety and depression; differences between pediatric and adult IBD care; and parental and provider reluctance to transition. Despite our ability to identify barriers and challenges, there remain significant gaps in our knowledge about how they should be addressed. Outcomes data on adolescents with IBD are limited, and there are even fewer data on how the transition of care affects long-term treatment and outcomes. More research is needed to truly understand the best way to facilitate care during transition and improve outcomes. Current research and transition guidelines acknowledge that providing support and guidance to patients and their families and establishing clear goals can ultimately equip patients with the skills needed to cope with a chronic disease as adults and can improve their long-term care. This paper provides an overview of the transition from pediatric to adult IBD care, a discussion of challenges and barriers, and recommendations and resources that can help patients, parents, and providers navigate this important process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)633-640
Number of pages8
JournalGastroenterology and Hepatology
Volume10
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • Crohn's disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Transition
  • Ulcerative colitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology

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