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News

Mortality is not higher in patients with ulcerative colitis

The overall risk of dying in patients with ulcerative colitis does not differ from that of the background population, reports the latest American Journal of Gastroenterology .

News image

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It remains debated whether patients with ulcerative colitis are at greater risk of dying.

It is also unclear whether a possible alteration in mortality can be attributed to specific causes of death.

Dr Tine Jess and colleagues from Denmark conducted a meta-analysis of population-based inception cohort studies on overall and cause-specific mortality in patients with ulcerative colitis.

The pooled standardized mortality ratio was 1.1
The American Journal of Gastroenterology

The investigators searched the MEDLINE search engine, and abstracts from international conferences for relevant literature by use of explicit search criteria.

The investigative team used STATA meta-analysis software to calculate pooled risk estimates standardized mortality ratio.

Observed over expected deaths of overall mortality, and specific causes of death were calculated.

The team conducted metaregression analyses of the influence of specific variables on standardized mortality ratio.

The investigators found that 10 papers fulfilled the inclusion criteria, reporting standardized mortality ratios varying from 0.7 to 1.4.

The overall pooled estimate was 1.1.

The team observed greater risk of dying during the first years of follow-up, in patients with extensive colitis, and in patients from Scandinavia.

Metaregression analysis showed an increase in standardized mortality ratio by increasing cohort size.

The investigators observed that ulcerative colitis-related mortality accounted for 17% of all deaths.

Mortality from gastrointestinal diseases, nonalcoholic liver diseases, pulmonary embolisms, and respiratory diseases was increased.

However, the team found that mortality from pulmonary cancer was reduced.

Dr Jess' team concluded, “The overall risk of dying in patients with ulcerative colitis did not differ from that of the background population, although subgroups of patients were at greater risk of dying.”

“The cause-of-death distribution seemed to differ from that of the background population.”

Am J Gastroenterol 2007: 102(3): 609-17
12 March 2007

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