Dr Charles Bernstein and colleagues from Canada discerned the relative risk for chronic inflammatory conditions with ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease.
The research team assessed the population-based University of Manitoba Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Database.
The database includes patients files from health system contacts identified by International Classification of Diseases, 9th revision, Clinical Modification codes for visit diagnosis.
From the provincial database, the team extracted a control cohort matching the IBD patients by age, sex, and geography.
The researchers considered a potential comorbid disease to be present if the patient had 5 or more health system contacts for that diagnosis.
The comorbid disease period prevalence was analyzed separately for patients with ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease.
|Arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, psoriasis, and pericarditis were increased in both groups|
The researchers calculated a prevalence ratio comparing the IBD populations with the matched cohort.
The team found that rhere were 8072 cases of IBD from 1984 to 2003, including 3879 with ulcerative colitis and 4193 with Crohn's disease.
There was a mean of approximately 16 person-years of coverage for both patients and control patients.
Ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease patients had a greater likelihood of arthritis, asthma, bronchitis, psoriasis, and pericarditis compared with population controls.
The team observed an increased risk for chronic renal disease and multiple sclerosis in ulcerative colitis, but not Crohn's disease patients.
In addition, the researchers identified arthritis and asthma as the most common nonintestinal comorbidities.
Dr Bernstein's team concluded, “The finding of asthma as the most common comorbidity increased in Crohn's disease patients compared with the general population is novel.”
”These may be diseases with common causes or complications of one disease that lead to the presentation with another.”
“Studies such as this should encourage further research into the common triggers in the organ systems that lead to autoimmune diseases.”