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      Rates of hospitalization among African American and Caucasian American patients with Crohn's disease seen at a tertiary care center

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          There is equivocal evidence regarding differences in the clinical course and outcomes of Crohn’s disease (CD) among African Americans compared with Caucasian Americans. We sought to analyze whether African Americans with CD are more likely to be hospitalized for CD-related complications when compared with Caucasian Americans with CD.


          We conducted a retrospective cohort study including 909 African Americans and Caucasian Americans with CD who were seen at our tertiary care Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) referral center between 2000 and 2013. We calculated the rate of hospitalization for CD-related complications among African Americans and Caucasian Americans separately. Zero-inflated Poisson regression models with robust variance estimates were used to estimate crude and multivariable adjusted rate ratios (RR) for CD-related hospitalizations. Multivariable adjusted models included adjustment for age, sex, duration of CD, smoking and CD therapy.


          The cumulative rate of CD-related hospital admissions was higher among African American patients compared with Caucasian American patients (395.6/1000 person-years in African Americans vs. 230.4/1000 person-years in Caucasian Americans). Unadjusted and multivariable adjusted rate ratios for CD-related hospitalization comparing African Americans and Caucasian Americans were 1.59 (95% confidence interval [95%CI]: 1.10–2.29; P=0.01) and 1.44 (95%CI: 1.02–2.03; P=0.04), respectively.


          African Americans with CD followed at a tertiary IBD-referral center had a higher rate for CD-related hospitalizations compared with Caucasian Americans. Future studies should examine whether socioeconomic status and biologic markers of disease status could explain the higher risk observed among African Americans.

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          Most cited references 21

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          Management of Crohn's disease in adults.

          Guidelines for clinical practice are intended to suggest preferable approaches to particular medical problems as established by interpretation and collation of scientifically valid research, derived from extensive review of published literature. When data that will withstand objective scrutiny are not available, a recommendation may be made based on a consensus of experts. Guidelines are intended to apply to the clinical situation for all physicians without regard to specialty. Guidelines are intended to be flexible, not necessarily indicating the only acceptable approach, and should be distinguished from standards of care that are inflexible and rarely violated. Given the wide range of choices in any health-care problem, the physician should select the course best suited to the individual patient and the clinical situation presented. These guidelines are developed under the auspices of the American College of Gastroenterology and its Practice Parameters Committee. Expert opinion is solicited from the outset for the document. The quality of evidence upon which a specific recommendation is based is as follows: Grade A: Homogeneous evidence from multiple well-designed randomized (therapeutic) or cohort (descriptive) controlled trials, each involving a number of participants to be of sufficient statistical power. Grade B: Evidence from at least one large well-designed clinical trial with or without randomization, from cohort or case-control analytic studies, or well-designed meta-analysis. Grade C: Evidence based on clinical experience, descriptive studies, or reports of expert committees. The Committee reviews guidelines in depth, with participation from experienced clinicians and others in related fields. The final recommendations are based on the data available at the time of the production of the document and may be updated with pertinent scientific developments at a later time.
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            Current cigarette smoking among adults - United States, 2005-2014.

            Tobacco smoking is the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States, resulting in approximately 480,000 premature deaths and more than $300 billion in direct health care expenditures and productivity losses each year (1). To assess progress toward achieving the Healthy People 2020 objective of reducing the percentage of U.S. adults who smoke cigarettes to ≤12.0%,* CDC assessed the most recent national estimates of smoking prevalence among adults aged ≥18 years using data from the 2014 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS). The percentage of U.S. adults who smoke cigarettes declined from 20.9% in 2005 to 16.8% in 2014. Among daily cigarette smokers, declines were observed in the percentage who smoked 20–29 cigarettes per day (from 34.9% to 27.4%) or ≥30 cigarettes per day (from 12.7% to 6.9%). In 2014, prevalence of cigarette smoking was higher among males, adults aged 25–44 years, multiracial persons and American Indian/Alaska Natives, persons who have a General Education Development certificate, live below the federal poverty level, live in the Midwest, are insured through Medicaid or are uninsured, have a disability or limitation, or are lesbian, gay, or bisexual. Proven population-based interventions, including tobacco price increases, comprehensive smoke-free laws, high impact mass media campaigns, and barrier-free access to quitting assistance, are critical to reduce cigarette smoking and smoking-related disease and death among U.S. adults.
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              Measurement of socioeconomic status in health disparities research.

              Socioeconomic status (SES) is frequently implicated as a contributor to the disparate health observed among racial/ ethnic minorities, women and elderly populations. Findings from studies that examine the role of SES and health disparities, however, have provided inconsistent results. This is due in part to the: 1) lack of precision and reliability of measures; 2) difficulty with the collection of individual SES data; 3) the dynamic nature of SES over a lifetime; 4) the classification of women, children, retired and unemployed persons; 5) lack of or poor correlation between individual SES measures; and 6) and inaccurate or misleading interpretation of study results. Choosing the best variable or approach for measuring SES is dependent in part on its relevance to the population and outcomes under study. Many of the commonly used compositional and contextual SES measures are limited in terms of their usefulness for examining the effect of SES on outcomes in analyses of data that include population subgroups known to experience health disparities. This article describes SES measures, strengths and limitations of specific approaches and methodological issues related to the analysis and interpretation of studies that examine SES and health disparities.

                Author and article information

                Gastroenterol Rep (Oxf)
                Gastroenterol Rep (Oxf)
                Gastroenterology Report
                Oxford University Press
                November 2017
                25 November 2016
                25 November 2016
                : 5
                : 4
                : 288-292
                [1 ]Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA
                [2 ]Department of Internal Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Montgomery, AL, USA
                [3 ]Department of Epidemiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA
                [4 ]Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA
                [5 ]Department of Surgery, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA
                Author notes
                [* ] Corresponding author. Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL 35294, USA. Tel: +1-205-934-3411; Fax: +1-205-934-8493; E-mail: carolinewalker@
                © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press and Sixth Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-Sen University

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. For commercial re-use, please contact

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