Implications of the changing epidemiology of inflammatory bowel disease in a changing world

United European Gastroenterol J. 2022 Dec;10(10):1113-1120. doi: 10.1002/ueg2.12317. Epub 2022 Oct 17.


The epidemiology of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) has undergone considerable shifts since its emergence in the Western world over a century ago, especially in the last few decades, with increasing global burden of disease. IBD incidence continues to rise in developed countries in all age groups which is contributing to compounding prevalence. Further, IBD incidence is rising sharply in Asia and other recently developed and developing countries. In this review, we discuss the implications of changing trends of IBD epidemiology. First, changing patterns provide insights into IBD causes, as they occur concurrent with shifts in the environment, cultures, and attitudes. Understanding the impact of the environment on IBD risk can help towards prediction and prevention strategies. Second, we must prepare healthcare systems for the rising burden of IBD and address it at various levels towards improving outcomes and health, overall.

Keywords: Crohn's disease; epidemiology; inflammatory bowel disease; prevention; ulcerative colitis.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Colitis, Ulcerative* / complications
  • Crohn Disease* / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases* / complications
  • Prevalence