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This consequence that inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) could have on the heart

  • May 22, 2024
  • 5 Min
  • 18
this-consequence-that-inflammatory-bowel-diseases-(ibd)-could-have-on-the-heart

Abdominal pain, diarrhea… chronic inflammatory bowel diseases, also known by the acronym “IBD”, affects nearly 200,000 people in France, according to the French register of chronic inflammatory bowel diseases. Generally diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 30, these pathologies can also occur at any age: in France, 15% of cases concern children, as the National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) points out.

Researchers from Karolinska Institutet, in Sweden, questioned the consequences of inflammatory bowel diseases on the cardiovascular health. They noted that IBD was associated with a slightly increased risk ofheart failure up to 20 years after diagnosis. Their results are published in theEuropean Heart Journal.

Inflammatory bowel disease may increase risk of heart failure

To arrive at these results, the researchers based themselves on a panel of more than 80,000 patients suffering from chronic inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease or the ulcerative colitis. The researchers noted the health status of the participants, particularly heart failure, then compared the results with 400,000 people from the general population. As a reminder, heart failure is “the inability of the heart muscle to normally propel blood through the body”, as explained by Health Insurance. She is “common, potentially severe, with a strong impact on quality of life if not detected in time and treated”.

The follow-up period spanned more than 20 years. Over this period, in total, 5,582 cases of heart failure were identified in patients suffering from chronic inflammatory bowel diseases. “This corresponds to one additional case of heart failure for every 130 IBD patients over these 20 years, and the increased risk was observed regardless of the type of IBD.”, emphasize the researchers. The authors also compared based on siblings without IBD. They noticed that the risk was 10%. According to the researchers, older patients or people with the lowest level of education had a greater risk.

Researchers call for cardiovascular health monitoring in IBD

In the press release, Professor Jonas F. Ludvigsson, lead author of the study and professor at the Karolinska Institutet, acknowledges that he does not know whether there is a cause and effect link. However, researchers call on health professionals to remain vigilant about the cardiovascular health of patients. “Healthcare providers and patients should be aware of this increased risk, and it is important that cardiovascular health is properly monitored,” underlines in the press release Jiangwei Sun, researcher at the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Karolinska Institutet. The latter hopes that “the findings will raise awareness among healthcare workers of the increased risk of heart failure in people with IBD and contribute to new guidelines for the management of cardiovascular disease in patients with IBD”.

Sources :

  • Risk of heart failure in inflammatory bowel disease: a Swedish population-based study – European Heart Journal.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease may increase risk of heart failure – Karolinska Institutet (communiqué).
  • Chronic inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) – National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm)
  • National IBD Observatory
author avatar
Louis Tardy