As the prevalence of ulcerative colitis is much higher in Western countries than in Asian countries, previous investigations of pregnancy outcomes for women with ulcerative colitis were limited to people of European descent.
Dr Chen and colleagues from Taiwan examined the risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes among Asian women with ulcerative colitis.
Using a 3-year nationwide population-based database, the researchers identified a total of 196 women who gave birth from 2001 to 2003, who were diagnosed with ulcerative colitis within 2 years before their index deliveries.
A total of 1,568 unaffected pregnant women matched these cases according to age and year of delivery.
|Odds of low birth weight for women with ulcerative colitis were 2.4|
|American Journal of Gastroenterology|
Conditional logistic regression analyses were performed to estimate risk.
There were significant differences between women with and without ulcerative colitis in terms of low birth weight, and preterm births.
The researchers adjusted for infant gender, parity, maternal age, highest maternal educational level, parental age difference, maternal marital status, hypertension, diabetes, anemia, family monthly income, as well as conditioning on maternal age and year of delivery.
After adjusting for these factors, the team found that the odds of low birth weight and preterm births for women with ulcerative colitis were 2.4 and 1.9 times, respectively.
Dr Chen's team concluded, "Ulcerative colitis often follows a milder disease course in Asians than in people of European descent."
"We demonstrated that Asian women suffering from ulcerative colitis were still at risk of having preterm and low birth weight babies, compared with unaffected mothers."