Background and Aims: The patient segmentation model based on disease acceptance and perceived control may guide personalized care in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). We aimed to investigate the external validity of the segmentation model and its consistency over time.

Methods: This is a multicenter longitudinal cohort study of adult IBD patients with questionnaires on disease acceptance and perceived control (6-items, 7-point Likert scale) and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) (Short IBD questionnaire, range 10-70). Segments were created based on mean scores (cut-off>5): (I) high acceptance, high control; (II) high acceptance, low control; (III) low acceptance, high control and; (IV) low acceptance, low control.

Results: The external validation cohort included 921 IBD patients. The acceptance and control scale were unidimensional and internally consistent. Segments differed significantly in gender, disease duration, IBD medication and clinical disease activity. High acceptance and/or high control were significantly associated with a higher HRQoL compared with low acceptance and low control (i.e., segment IV) (Beta (95%CI) segment I=11.7 (10.4-13.1), segment II=9.3 (7.7-10.9) and segment III=3.8 (1.6-6.0), p≤0.001). The follow-up cohort included 783 patients: 58% remained in the same segment while 42% differed in segment over time. Changes in segment were positively correlated with changes in HRQoL over time (Spearman rho 0.38, p<0.001).

Conclusions: The patient segmentation model based on disease acceptance and perceived control was externally valid and showed consistency over time. The different segments were independently associated with HRQoL. Future interventions should aim to personalize care based on segments and improve disease acceptance and perceived control of IBD patients.


quality of life, subjective health, personalized care, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis