A look into the unexpected inverse relationship between the two disorders.
A recent study investigated the association between ulcerative colitis (UC) and bipolar disorder (BD) in a young adult inpatient population. Contrary to expectations, the research revealed an inverse relationship between the two conditions, challenging previous understanding of their connection. The findings, based on a large sample size and national representation, prompt further investigation into the underlying mechanisms.
- The study used weighted National Inpatient Sample (NIS) data for young adults diagnosed with BD between October 2015 and December 2017.
- Among 294,640 patients diagnosed with BD, only 0.2% (n = 595) had UC.
- The overall prevalence of UC was less (0.7%) among patients with BD compared to those without BD (1.5%), with an odds ratio of 0.47 (95% CI, 0.39–0.56).
- Multivariable regression analysis confirmed the significant inverse association between BD and UC (OR: 0.39, 95% CI, 0.33–0.48).
- The findings contradict prior studies and the understanding of inflammatory pathogenesis.
- Possible explanations include prolonged incubation of both UC and BD, a dose-response relationship between inflammation and development, or the influence of treatments on inflammatory markers.
- The study acknowledges limitations, including the inability to ascertain information about inflammatory markers in UC and BD.
- The surprising inverse relationship between UC and BD warrants further research to explore the underlying mechanisms and potential intermediate factors that inflammation may modify differently in these conditions.
Did You Know?
Ulcerative colitis (UC) affects approximately 700,000 people in the United States, with the prevalence varying across different regions and populations.