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Environmental Factors May Play a Role in the Pathogenesis of IBD
      12/01/03 05:56 PM
HeatherAdministrator

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Environmental Factors May Play a Role in the Pathogenesis of IBD

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Nov 14 - The clinical spectrum of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is evolving, results of a study published in the October issue of the Journal of Pediatrics suggest. The findings point to changing environmental factors as contributors to the pathogenesis of the disease

In a population-based study, Dr. Subra Kugathasan, of the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues examined the incidence of pediatric IBD and defined clinical characteristics of the disease. Demographic and clinical data on all new cases of IBD in Wisconsin over a 2-year period were prospectively analyzed.

The overall incidence of IBD in children was 7.05 per 100,000, according to the researchers. The incidences of Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) were 4.56 and 2.14 per 100,000, respectively.

The mean ages of diagnosis for IBD, CD, and UC were 12.5 years, 13.5 years, and 11.8 years, respectively.

The IBD incidence rates were similar among all ethnic groups, as well as among children from sparsely versus densely populated regions. Only 11% of the newly diagnoses IBD cases had first- or second-degree relatives with a history of the disease.

The lack of family history and the higher incidence of Crohn's disease than ulcerative colitis suggest to the investigators that new environmental factors are involved.

Also, they point out, the incidence of IBD in children they documented is the highest ever reported.

"A parallel phenomenon is the dramatic increase in asthma during the same period in the West," Dr. Kugathasan and colleagues note. "The concomitant emergence of chronic inflammation in the lung and gut also supports the concept that changing environmental factors play a pivotal role in the increased frequency of these disorders in children."

J Pediatr 2203;143:525-531.

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/464442?mpid=21407

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