Epidemiology of intrafamilial inflammatory bowel disease throughout Europe
Arias Loste, María Teresa; Marqués de Valdecilla University Hospital. Santander. Spain
research founded by WLA grant by the Marqués de Valdecilla Foundation (IFIMAV), Santander, Spain.
The incidence and prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have distinctly changed overthe past decades throughout Europe. From former North-South and West-East risk gradients,nowadays, classic high-risk areas for IBD in North and West present more stable incidenceswhereas in formerly low-risk zones the incidence is rising. These changes cannot be explainedby genetic modifications in IBD patients’ background, which draws attention to the possibleexistence of potent environmental factors triggering this epidemiologic shift. Important lessonscan be drawn from different European population-based studies assessing the influenceof environmental factors in familial IBD that may impact on the outcome of the disease andthe management of the patients and their relatives.Keywords inflammatory bowel disease, epidemiology, familial aggregation, environmentalfactorsAnn Gastroenterol 2012; 25 (3): 188-192