A recent Canadian report suggests that people who suffer from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) conditions, such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, may be more likely to suffer from depression or anxiety disorders as well. Researchers analyzed rates of anxiety and mood disorders in 351 patients with clearly established IBD, compared with 779 people who did not IBD, but lived in the same region, and with general populations. They found that those with IBD had higher rates of panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and major depression. But more research needs to be done to discover the connection.

“Almost one-third of those who had an anxiety disorder or mood disorder had new onset around the time of IBD diagnosis,” says Charles N. Bernstein, MD, from the University of Manitoba at Winnipeg.

IBD is a disease that inflames the intestines, the main part of the digestive track, and results from an immune reaction of the body against its own intestinal tissue. The disease affects over 600,000 Americans. Learn more about IBD here.