BACKGROUND: Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) are severe medical conditions with adverse impact on the quality of life of both children and their caregivers. IBD are associated with many limitations in personal and interpersonal functioning, and it also restricts the patients' ability to use the full potential (extent) of their capabilities. With the progress and humanization in society, the issue of patients' needs became an important topic; however, the psychosocial functioning and quality of life of adolescents suffering from IBD and their caregivers have been understudied. The aim of this article is to provide a comprehensive, up-to-date literature review of the unmet needs of patients with IBD and their caregivers.
METHOD: A computerized search of MEDLINE publications from 1990 to 2016 using the keywords "inflammatory bowel disease", "Crohn disease", "ulcerative colitis" and "unmet needs". In the period 1990-2016, the MEDLINE searches identified 54 publications. Articles cited in the papers from these searches were also used. The total number of 132 particular articles were collected, sorted by their relevance and key articles (n=72) listed in reference lists were searched.
RESULTS: Patients' needs differ at various stages of the illness and may have different origins and goals. Thus, we divided the needs into five groups according to their nature; i.e. needs to be connected with symptoms, treatment, quality of life, family and age-related challenges. We provide implications of the patients' needs for pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy.
CONCLUSION: Following the needs of patients with IBD may be a crucial part of the therapeutic process. Due to the better understanding and cooperation, the impact of disease could be reduced, and the physical and mental condition of the patient could be improved. However, many needs remain unmet due to both medical and social factors.