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News

Mortality among patients with Crohn's and ulcerative colitis

A study in this month's Clinical Gastroenterology & Hepatology examines trends in overall and cause-specific mortality among patients with IBD.

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Treatments for inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD) have changed over time, with unclear effects on prognosis.

Dr Tine Jess from Denmark investigated overall and cause-specific mortality in a Danish cohort of patients with inflammatory bowel diseases during a 30-year time period.

The team compared data from 36,080 patients with ulcerative colitis, and 15,361 with Crohn's disease, who were diagnosed in Denmark from 1982 to 2010, and compared them with data from 2,858,096 matched individuals from the general population.

Overall and cause-specific mortality were estimated by Cox regression analysis, adjusted for age, sex, disease duration, and known comorbidities before inflammatory bowel diseases diagnosis.

The research team presented results as hazard ratios with 95% confidence intervals.

People with Crohn's had 50% greater mortality than the general population
Clinical Gastroenterology & Hepatology

Mortality greatly increased in the first year after individuals were diagnosed with inflammatory bowel diseases.

The team observed that intermediate-term and long-term mortalities increased by approximately 10% among individuals with ulcerative colitis, and 50% among those with Crohn's disease, compared with the general population.

The team of doctors assessed that if compared with the time period of 1982–1989, overall mortalities decreased among patients diagnosed with ulcerative colitis from 1990 to 1999, and from 2000 to 2010.

These reductions were mainly due to decreased mortality from colorectal cancer, gastrointestinal disorders, and suicide.

The researchers noted that for individuals with Crohn's disease, mortality did not change among these time periods because of long-term increases in mortality from infections, cancer, respiratory diseases, and gastrointestinal diseases.

Dr Jess' team comments, "In a Danish cohort, mortality from ulcerative colitis decreased from 1982 to 2010, largely because of reduced mortalities from gastrointestinal disorders and colorectal cancer."

"People with Crohn's disease had 50% greater mortality than the general population, and this value did not change during this time period."

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol 2013: 11(1): 43-48
18 January 2013

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