Objective. We aimed to evaluate the controversial association between alexithymia and depression with different assessment methods. Methods. Self-report and personality measures were administered to 92 patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Alexithymia was assessed with the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) and with 4 variables from Exner's Rorschach Comprehensive System that represent the core features of this construct (F%, CDI, EA, and M). Depression was assessed with the depression subscale of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the Rorschach Depression Index (DEPI). Results. The TAS-20 and the 4 Rorschach variables of alexithymia were significantly associated but both measures of alexithymia were unrelated to HADS and DEPI. Multiple regression showed that the Rorschach variables (F%, CDI, and EA), but not DEPI and HADS, were independently associated to the TAS-20. Disease activity was significantly associated with depressive symptoms but not with alexithymia. Conclusion. Within this sample of IBD patients, alexithymia (as assessed by the TAS-20 and the Rorschach) was unrelated either to depression, regardless of the assessment methods, and disease activity. Conversely, depressive symptoms were positively associated with higher IBD activity.
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