Cancer risk in patients with inflammatory bowel disease: a population-based study

Cancer. 2001 Feb 15;91(4):854-62. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(20010215)91:4<854::aid-cncr1073>;2-z.


Background: The objective of the current study was to determine the incidence of cancer among persons with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and to compare these incidence rates with those of the non-IBD population using population-based data from the administrative claims data of Manitoba's universal provincial insurance plan (Manitoba Health).

Methods: IBD patients were matched 1:10 to randomly selected members of the population without IBD based on year, age, gender, and postal area of residence. The incidence of cancer was determined by linking records from the IBD and non-IBD cohorts with the comprehensive Cancer Care Manitoba registry. Incidence rates and rate ratios (IRR) were calculated based on person-years of follow-up (Crohn's disease = 21,340 person-years and ulcerative colitis [UC] = 19,665 person-years) for 1984-1997.

Results: There was an increased IRR of colon carcinoma for both Crohn disease patients (2.64; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 1.69-4.12) and UC patients (2.75; 95% CI, 1.91-3.97). There was an increased IRR of rectal carcinoma only among patients with UC (1.90; 95% CI, 1.05-3.43) and an increased IRR of carcinoma of the small intestine only in Crohn disease patients (17.4; 95% CI, 4.16-72.9). An increased IRR of extraintestinal tumors was observed only for the liver and biliary tract in both Crohn disease patients (5.22; 95% CI, 0.96-28.5) and UC patients (3.96; 95% CI, 1.05-14.9). There was an increased IRR of lymphoma for males with Crohn disease only (3.63; 95% CI, 1.53-8.62), and this finding did not appear to be related to use of immunomodulatory therapy. Compared with controls, Crohn's disease was associated with an increased risk of cancer overall, but UC was not.

Conclusions: There appear to be similar increased risks for developing colon carcinoma and hepatobiliary carcinoma among patients with Crohn disease and UC. There is an increased risk of developing rectal carcinoma in UC patients, an increased risk of developing carcinoma of the small bowel in Crohn disease patients, and an increased risk of developing lymphoma among males with Crohn disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Colitis, Ulcerative / complications
  • Colitis, Ulcerative / epidemiology
  • Crohn Disease / complications
  • Crohn Disease / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / complications*
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Intestinal Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Liver Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Lymphoma / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Registries
  • Risk Factors