The association between new generation oral contraceptive pill and the development of inflammatory bowel diseases

Santosh Sanagapalli, Yanna Ko, Viraj Kariyawasam, Siew C. Ng, Whitney Tang, Hithanadura Janaka de Silva, Minhu Chen, Kaichun Wu, Satimai Aniwan, Ka Kei Ng, David Ong, Qin Ouyang, Ida Hilmi, Marcellus Simadibrata, Pises Pisespongsa, Saranya Gopikrishna, Rupert W. Leong*, Sydney IBD Cohort Collaborators, Asia-Pacific Crohn's and Colitis Epidemiologic Study (ACCESS) Study Group

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background/Aims: To examine the association between use of oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) and the risk of developing inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), in a modern cohort. Methods: A prospective nested case-control study across sites in the Asia-Pacific region was conducted; involving female IBD cases and asymptomatic controls. Subjects completed a questionnaire addressing questions related to OCP use. Primary outcome was the risk of development of IBD of those exposed to OCP versus non-exposure. Secondary outcomes were development of Crohn's disease (CD) versus ulcerative colitis (UC), and whether age of first use of OCP use may be associated with risk of IBD. Results: Three hundred and forty-eight female IBD cases (41% CD, median age: 43 years) and 590 female age-matched controls were recruited. No significant association was found between OCP use and the risk of IBD (odds ratio [OR], 1.65; 95% confidence interval, 0.77-3.13; P=0.22), CD (OR, 1.55) or UC (OR, 1.01). The lack of association persisted when results were adjusted for age and smoking. IBD cases commenced OCP use at a younger age than controls (18 years vs. 20 years, P=0.049). Conclusions: In this large cohort of subjects from the Asia-Pacific region, we found a modest but not significantly increased risk of developing IBD amongst OCP users.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-415
Number of pages7
JournalIntestinal Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Publisher 2018. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Contraceptives,oral
  • Inflammatory bowel diseases


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