The Role of Guilt and Shame-proneness and Externalization of Blame as Risk Factors for Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Various psychological factors have been found to be associated with the onset of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Despite this, there remains a lack of acceptance for a biopsychosocial model of intervention, specifically targeted to the prevention and treatment of IBD. The aim of this study was to assess the predictive relationships between guiltproneness, shame-proneness, externalization of blame and IBD. The study employed a quasi-experimental study design. The Short-Form- Test-of-Self-Conscious-Affect (TOSCA-3) was administered to 128 IBD patients and 129 controls without IBD. Independent t-tests revealed significant differences in shame-proneness and guilt-proneness between IBD patients and controls. In addition, a binary logistic regression analysis revealed that the odds of having IBD were significantly higher for individuals with high shame-proneness, high guilt-proneness and low levels of externalization of blame. The findings highlight the significance of guilt and shame-proneness as risk factors for IBD, and of externalization of blame as a protective factor, through the reduction of shame-proneness. Psychological interventions aimed at the reduction of guilt and shame-proneness could potentially attenuate illness expression of IBD.