Service Communautaire d'Information sur la Recherche et le Développement - CORDIS

Pregnancy alters the disease course in Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) often affects patients in their fertile age. The aim of this study was to describe pregnancy outcome in a European cohort of IBD patients. As data is limited regarding the effect of pregnancy on disease course, our second objective was to investigate whether pregnancy influences disease course and phenotype in IBD patients.

In a European cohort of IBD patients, a 10-year follow-up was performed by scrutinizing patient files and approaching the patients with a questionnaire. The cohort comprised 1125 patients, of whom 543 were women. Data from 173 female UC and 93 CD patients form the basis for the present study.

In all 580 pregnancies, 403 occurring before and 177 after IBD was diagnosed were reported. The rate of spontaneous abortion increased after IBD was diagnosed (6.5% vs. 13%, p=0.005), whereas elective abortion was not significantly different. 48.6% of the patients took medication at time of conception and 46.9% during pregnancy. The use of caesarean section increased after IBD diagnose (8.1% vs. 28.7% of pregnancies). CD patients pregnant during disease course, did not differ from patients not pregnant during disease course regarding development of stenosis (37% vs. 52% p=0.13) and resection rates (mean number of resections 0.52 vs. 0.66, p=0.37). The rate of relapse decreased in the years following pregnancy in both UC (0.34 vs. 0.18 flares/year, p=0.008) and CD patients (0.76 vs. 0.12 flares/year, p=0.004).

Pregnancy did not influence disease phenotype or surgery rates, but was connected to a reduced number of flares in the following years.

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Reported by

Herlev Hospital
Dept of Med Gastroenterology
2730 Herlev