Racial Differences in Pediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Black children with inflammatory bowel disease more likely to present with Crohn's disease and at older ages

MONDAY, Dec. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is more likely to present as Crohn's disease and at an older age in black children compared with other children and adolescents, according to a report published in the December issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Jolanda M. White, of Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, and colleagues conducted an epidemiological investigation using data extracted from the Pediatric IBD Consortium. Of 1,406 pediatric patients identified, 10 percent (138 patients) were black.

Compared with non-black patients, black patients were more likely to be diagnosed with Crohn's disease, instead of ulcerative colitis or indeterminate colitis (59 percent versus 78 percent, respectively), the researchers report. Significantly more black children were over 12 years of age when they were diagnosed with IBD, compared with non-black American children (52 percent versus 37 percent, respectively). Additionally, black patients were more likely to present with a low hemoglobin level compared with other patients (39 percent versus 17 percent, respectively), the investigators found.

"Racial/ethnic differences in the epidemiology of IBD, particularly Crohn's disease, among American youths require further investigation," the authors conclude.

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