Gastroenterology & GI Surgery

Welcome to the Mayo Clinic Gastroenterology & GI Surgery Page! With one of the largest group of digestive disease specialists in the world, Mayo Clinic has been recognized as the nation's best Gastroenterology & GI Surgery hospital by U.S. News & World Report. Follow the page to learn about clinical trials and up-to-date research, and find resources for all your gastroenterology needs. Our goal is to connect you to others, and become informed decision makers; so post a comment, share your story, own your health.

Feb 25, 2014

Risks of Birth Defects in Women Who Have Inflammatory Bowel Disease

By Kanaaz Pereira, Connect Moderator, @kanaazpereira

Sunanda Kane, M. D., discusses a recent paper published in the Gastroenterology Journal about the risks of birth defects in women who have inflammatory bowel disease. One of the most important questions a woman has when thinking about having children is will her inflammatory bowel disease increase the risk for birth defects.

There has been conflicted data in recent studies about inflammatory bowel disease causing birth defects. This study, published in the United Kingdom, looks at all women with inflammatory bowel disease throughout the United Kingdom from 1990 to 2010 and assess whether or not their children have a birth defect. In addition, the study assessed the mother's health in terms of if she was a smoker, the age when she conceived, where she was located geographically for prenatal care, and if she was taking any medication for her inflammatory bowel disease. The study examined 1,700 children born to mothers with inflammatory bowel disease and compare them to over 400,000 children born to mothers without inflammatory bowel disease. The results show the birth defect rate to be exactly the same in both groups of children. There was no difference in the birth defect rate when broken down in terms of crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. The conclusion of the authors was the risk of birth defects for moms who have inflammatory bowel disease was no higher than the background population.

To read the full article, click here.

For more information on IBD, visit

Dr. Kane is a gastroenterologist at Mayo Clinic.

Please login or register to post a reply.

Invite Others

Send an email to invite people you know to join the Gastroenterology & GI Surgery page.

We'll include this text in the user's invitation.