Introduction The aim of this study was to investigate the association between body mass index (BMI) and symptomatic diverticular disease requiring hospital admission.
Method We used data from the Swedish Construction Workers Cohort (persons with a first examination in 1987–1993). These workers underwent health evaluations including recording of body mass index (BMI) at enrolment. We linked their data to the Swedish Hospital Discharge Register from 1987 to identify hospital admissions for symptomatic diverticular disease. Relative Risks (RRs) of symptomatic diverticular disease according to BMI (18.5–19.9 kg/m2, 20–24.9 kg/m2, 25–29.9 kg/m2, 30–34.9 kg/m2and 35 kg/m2) were estimated using Poisson regression and adjusted for age, smoking and socioeconomic status.
Results We identified 64640 men with a median age of 28.8 years. Increased BMI was associated with an increased risk of developing symptomatic diverticular disease. Those patients with a BMI between 25.0–29.9 kg/m2had a 1.6 fold increase in risk of symptomatic diverticular disease compared to those with a BMI between 20–24.9 kg/m2 (adjusted RR 1.61, 95% CI 1.33–1.96). Those with a BMI of 30.0–34.9 kg/m2had a 2.1 fold increase in risk of symptomatic diverticular disease compared to those with a BMI between 20–24.9 kg/m2 (adjusted RR 2.11, 95% CI 1.51–2.94). There was no association between being underweigh and an increased risk of symptomatic diverticular disease (adjusted RR 1.55, 95% CI 0.73–3.31).
Conclusion Increasing BMI is associated with an increased risk of asymptomatic diverticular disease requiring hospitalisation. Further studies are required to determine if weight reduction may reduce the occurrence of symptomatic diverticular disease.
Disclosure of interest None Declared.