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Recent immigrants with inflammatory bowel disease have significant health-care utilization from preconception to postpartum: a population cohort study


Background — Immigrants with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) may have increased health-care utilization during pregnancy compared to non-immigrants, though this remains to be confirmed. We aimed to characterize this between these groups.

Methods — We accessed administrative databases to identify women (age 18-55) with IBD with a singleton pregnancy between 2003-2018. Immigration status was defined as recent (< 5 years of date of conception), remote (≥ 5 years since date of conception), and none. Differences in ambulatory, emergency department (ED), hospitalization, endoscopic, and prenatal visits during 12-months preconception, pregnancy and 12-months postpartum were characterized. Region of immigration origin was ascertained. Multivariable negative binomial regression was performed for adjusted incidence rate ratios (aIRR) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CI).

Results — 8880 pregnancies were included, 8304 in non-immigrants, 96 in recent immigrants, 480 in remote immigrants. Compared to non-immigrants, recent immigrants had the highest rates of IBD-specific ambulatory visits during preconception (aIRR 3.06, 95% CI, 1.93-4.85), pregnancy (aIRR 2.15, 95% CI, 1.35-3.42), and postpartum (aIRR 2.21, 1.37-3.57) and the greatest rates of endoscopy visits during preconception (aIRR 2.69, 95% CI, 1.64-4.41) and postpartum (aIRR 2.01, 95% CI, 1.09-3.70). There were no differences in ED and hospitalization visits between groups though those arriving from the Americas were the most likely to be hospitalized for any reason. All immigrants with IBD were less likely to have a first trimester prenatal visit.

Conclusion — Recent immigrants were more likely to have IBD-specific ambulatory care but less likely to receive adequate prenatal care during pregnancy.



Tandon P, Huang V, Feig DS, Saskin R, Maxwell C, Gao Y, Fell DB, Seow CH, Snelgrove JW, Nguyen GC. Am J Gastroenterol. 2024; Jan 23 [Epub ahead of print].

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