Tricky Article Title: IBD and Celiac

M Alkhayyat et al. Inflamm Bowel Dis 2022; 28: 385-392. Patients With Inflammatory Bowel Disease on Treatment Have Lower Rates of Celiac Disease

When I first saw this title, I mistakenly thought the title indicated that celiac disease (CD) occurred less often in those with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This would have been surprising given previous studies have found the opposite. In fact, this study confirms the bidirectional associated risk between patients with CD and in patients with IBD but with a twist. Most IBD treatments were associated with a lower risk of developing CD than those who were not treated.

Database study: Of the 72,965,940 individuals in the database (1999-2020), 133,400 had celiac disease (CD) (0.18%), 191,570 (0.26%) had ulcerative colitis (UC), and 230,670 (0.32%) had Crohn disease.

Key findings:

  • Patients with IBD were more likely to have a diagnosis of celiac disease (odds ratio [OR], 13.680), with a greater association with Crohn disease (OR 24.473).
  • Treated patients with IBD with UC and with Crohn disease, respectively, had a lower risk association with CD compared to those not undergoing IBD treatment, specifically corticosteroids (OR, 0.407 and 0.585), 5-aminosalicylates (OR, 0.124 and 0.127), immunomodulators (OR, 0.385 and 0.425), and anti-tumor necrosis factor drugs (OR, 0.215 and 0.242)
  • A new diagnosis of CD after 1 year of IBD diagnosis, was 1.59% for Crohn disease and 0.90% for UC compared to 0.16% in patients without IBD (P<0.0001)
  • A new diagnosis of IBD, Crohn disease and UC respectively, in patients with celiac disease was 2.75% and 1.11% compared to 0.29% and 0.25% in the non-celiac population (P<0.0001)
  • A new diagnosis of IBD and celiac disease among patients with microscopic colitis was 10.5% and 2.6% respectively; a new diagnosis of microscopic colitis among patients with celiac disease was 0.01%

My take: This study confirms the bidirectional associated risk between IBD and celiac disease. The risk of developing celiac disease in those with IBD may be lower in those receiving some treatments; however, this assertion is limited by the nature of a database study.

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