Incidence, duration, and management of anemia: a nationwide comparison between IBD and non-IBD populations.

This is a large database report of the incidence and duration of anaemia in the inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) population over the course of their disease lifetime. The authors conducted a retrospective nationwide cohort study among the US veteran population from 2011 to 2018. The primary outcomes were the incidence of anaemia, the number of any anaemia days per year, and the number of moderate or severe anaemia days per year in the IBD population compared to the non-IBD group.

More than half of the patients with IBD (55%) developed anaemia after diagnosis of the disease, with 25% developing moderate-to-severe anaemia. The incidence rate of anaemia was 85% higher in the IBD cohort (>3000) than the matched non-IBD (>5000) patients. This is almost twice the number of days per year in an anaemic state when compared with non-IBD patients.

Despite experiencing a higher incidence of anaemia (adjusted risk ratio 1.85) and spending a longer time anaemic, only 40% of anaemic IBD patients received iron replacement therapy. The authors conclude that more efforts should be made to recognise and treat anaemia among patients with IBD.

– Susan M. Goobie (SABM reviewer)