Global Hospitalization Trends for Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis in the 21st Century: A Systematic Review With Temporal Analyses

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2023 Aug;21(9):2211-2221. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2022.06.030. Epub 2022 Jul 19.


Background & aims: The evolving epidemiologic patterns of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) throughout the world, in conjunction with advances in therapeutic treatments, may influence hospitalization rates of IBD. We performed a systematic review with temporal analysis of hospitalization rates for IBD across the world in the 21st century.

Methods: We systematically reviewed Medline and Embase for population-based studies reporting hospitalization rates for IBD, Crohn's disease (CD), or ulcerative colitis (UC) in the 21st century. Log-linear models were used to calculate the average annual percentage change (AAPC) with associated 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs). Random-effects meta-analysis pooled country-level AAPCs. Data were stratified by the epidemiologic stage of a region: compounding prevalence (stage 3) in North America, Western Europe, and Oceania vs acceleration of incidence (stage 2) in Asia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America vs emergence (stage 1) in developing countries.

Results: Hospitalization rates for a primary diagnosis of IBD were stable in countries in stage 3 (AAPC, -0.13%; 95% CI, -0.72 to 0.97), CD (AAPC, 0.20%; 95% CI, -1.78 to 2.17), and UC (AAPC, 0.02%; 95% CI, -0.91 to 0.94). In contrast, hospitalization rates for a primary diagnosis were increasing in countries in stage 2 for IBD (AAPC, 4.44%; 95% CI, 2.75 to 6.14), CD (AAPC, 8.34%; 95% CI, 4.38 to 12.29), and UC (AAPC, 3.90; 95% CI, 1.29 to 6.52). No population-based studies were available for developing regions in stage 1 (emergence).

Conclusions: Hospitalization rates for IBD are stabilizing in countries in stage 3, whereas newly industrialized countries in stage 2 have rapidly increasing hospitalization rates, contributing to an increasing burden on global health care systems.

Keywords: Crohn’s Disease; Epidemiology; Hospitalization Rates; Inflammatory Bowel Disease; Ulcerative Colitis.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review
  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Asia / epidemiology
  • Colitis, Ulcerative* / epidemiology
  • Colitis, Ulcerative* / therapy
  • Crohn Disease* / epidemiology
  • Crohn Disease* / therapy
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases* / epidemiology