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Incidence of inflammatory bowel disease in northern France (1988-1990).
  1. C Gower-Rousseau,
  2. J L Salomez,
  3. J L Dupas,
  4. R Marti,
  5. M C Nuttens,
  6. A Votte,
  7. M Lemahieu,
  8. B Lemaire,
  9. J F Colombel,
  10. A Cortot
  1. Registre des Maladies Inflammatoires du Tube Digestif du Nord-Ouest de la France.


    There were no data concerning the incidence of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in France. The aim of this study was to investigate the incidence of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis in northern France. This prospective population based study was realised through the gastroenterologists of the region Nord-Pas de Calais and the Somme Department. Each gastroenterologist referred patients consulting for the first time with clinical symptoms compatible with IBD. Data were collected by an interviewer practitioner present at the gastroenterologist's consulting room. Two independent expert gastroenterologists assessed each case in a blind manner and made a final diagnosis of Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, ulcerative proctitis, or unclassifiable chronic colitis. From 1988 to 1990, 1291 cases of IBD were recorded: 674 (52%) Crohn's disease, 466 (36%) ulcerative colitis including 162 proctitis (35%), and 151 (12%) unclassifiable chronic colitis. The mean annual incidence was 4.9 per 100,000 for Crohn's disease and 3.2 for ulcerative colitis. The sex ratio F/M was 1.3 for Crohn's disease and 0.8 for ulcerative colitis. The highest age specific incidence rate for Crohn's disease was between 20 and 29 years: 13.1 for women and 9.8 for men. The highest age specific incidence rate for ulcerative colitis was between 20 and 39 years: 5.5 for women and 6.5 for men. This first French prospective study has shown an incidence rate for Crohn's disease comparable with that seen in north European studies but lower than that seen for ulcerative colitis. These results could be related to the different environmental factors or the genetic background of the population studied, or both.

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