The rate of fracture among patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is slightly higher than that in the general population.
Corticosteroid therapy has been linked to an increase fracture risk in other diseases, although the previous evidence regarding IBD is inconclusive.
A research team at the University of Mannitoba, Canada, used a population based database to investigate the link between corticosteroid therapy and fracture in IBD patients.
The researchers determined whether patients with IBD who sustain fractures are more likely to have been using corticosteroids than a matched group of IBD patients who did not fracture.
| Patients who require corticosteroids in Crohn’s disease should be considered at risk for fracture |
|The American Journal of Gastroenterology|
In Crohn’s disease patients corticosteroid therapy was significantly asscociated with an increased fracture risk.
Corticosteroid use was detected in 54% of Crohn’s disease patients who sustained fractures compared with 21% of patients in the control group who did not fracture.
In ulcerative colitis patients there was no link between corticosteroid therapy and fracture risk.
The prescribed daily dose among corticosteroid users was comparable for those who fractured (18 mg/day) versus those who did not fracture (21 mg/day).
The research team suggest that. “Further research is required to discover how much corticosteroid use and what duration of active disease are required to put patients at risk.”