RALEIGH, N.C. Women with psoriasis had a four-fold increase in the risk of Crohn’s disease, according to data from two large cohort studies.
Symptoms of ulcerative colitis are constipation with passage of blood or mucus in the stools. The patient may have the urge to defecate with only a scanty bowel movement. Several months or years may pass before diarrhea develops with abdominal pain. The patient may then develop severe fatigue, weight loss, loss of appetite, fever and occasionally painful joints.
Ulcerative colitis is usually diagnosed by means of sigmoidoscopy using a flexible viewing tube which enables the examining physician to directly visualize the inflamed intestinal lining. Alternatively a barium enema with an x-ray may show characteristic changes in the outline of the intestines.
Psoriasis did not increase the risk of ulcerative colitis in either of the individual cohorts or in the combined analysis.
The Crohn’s risk held up in separate analyses of the two studies and in a combined analysis of data from both cohorts.
The findings reinforce those from smaller observational studies, and from genomic analyses, that have suggested an association between psoriasis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), as reported here at the Society for Investigative Dermatology meeting.
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