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Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2006 Jun;4(6):731-43. Epub 2006 May 2.

Health care resource utilization in inflammatory bowel disease.

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  • 1University of Manitoba Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinical and Research Centre and Department of Medicine, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.



The aim of this study was to quantify temporal changes in health care utilization by a population-based cohort of IBD.


By using the University of Manitoba IBD Epidemiology Database we assessed utilization of outpatient and hospital services, estimating relative risk (RR) of utilization for IBD cases compared with a matched cohort of non-IBD controls and for CD versus UC. We tested differences in utilization between prevalence cohorts 1990-1991 and 2000-2001. Also, utilization of the 1987-1988 incidence cohort was followed forward 15 years from diagnosis. The probability, intensity, and volume of utilization were estimated.


In 2000-2001, IBD patients compared with controls were more likely to have an outpatient visit (RR, 1.18; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.17-1.19) and an overnight hospital stay (RR, 2.32; 95% CI, 2.16-2.49). CD cases were more likely than UC cases to be hospitalized (RR, 1.26; 95% CI, 1.11-1.43) and had a greater number of outpatient visits. From 1990-1991 to 2000-2001, IBD cases experienced a significant decrease in the likelihood of an outpatient surgical visit relative to non-IBD controls (P < .05), and for those cases who were hospitalized, CD cases tended to be less likely than UC cases to experience IBD-specific inpatient surgery (P < .07). Of the 1987-1988 incidence cohort, 80% of admissions that occurred during the follow-up period were during the first 5 years after diagnosis.


In 2000-2001, health care utilization continued to be higher in IBD versus controls and CD versus UC; however, the gap in costly service utilization appeared to narrow between the latter pair.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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