Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) affects over 20,000 New Zealanders. Most are diagnosed between the ages of 15 and 45
years but can also be diagnosed in childhood.
IBD includes two diseases, Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. These are chronic conditions with no cure. People who
are affected have a range of gut symptoms including abdominal pain, bleeding from the bowel and diarrhoea. They can also
have fatigue, poor appetite and weight loss.
Studies from New Zealand in 2004 and 2014 have demonstrated that Canterbury has one of the highest rates of Crohn’s
disease in the world. IBD researchers from NZ and around the word have been contributing to two important initiatives to
help people with IBD and increase our understanding of how IBD affects people around the world.IOIBD GIVES
IOIBD GIVES (Global IBD Visualization of Epidemiology Studies) is an international initiative to summarize
epidemiological data on the burden of IBD throughout the world. We have collected published data on epidemiological
parameters such as the incidence and prevalence of IBD. The data is displayed in an online interactive map that allows
the user to click on a country and see all the published data from the selected country. Please explore the map by
following this link: https://arcg.is/0nfan9SECURE-IBD
Surveillance Epidemiology of Coronavirus Under Research Exclusion (SECURE-IBD) is an international, pediatric and adult
database to monitor and report on outcomes of COVID-19 occurring in IBD patients. Many people with IBD receive drugs
that suppress the immune system in order to reduce the inflammation in the gut. However, these drugs could possibly
increase the risk of infections. SECURE-IBD enables researchers to understand the effect of COVID-19 on people with IBD.
This will allow us to make robust recommendations to people with IBD and their health care providers to reduce the risks
during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please explore the registry by following this link: www.covidibd.org
Chances are you know someone personally with IBD. Don’t be shy to show them your support, especially on Tuesday 19th
Issued by Professor Richard Gearry, on behalf of the Executive of the New Zealand Society of Gastroenterology. Visit: http://www.nzsg.org.nz/