Prevalence and Implications of Frailty in Older Adults With Incident Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: A Nationwide Cohort Study

Bharati Kochar, Juulia Jylhävä, Jonas Söderling, Christine S Ritchie, SWIBREG Study Group, Jonas F Ludvigsson, Hamed Khalili, Ola Olén

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


BACKGROUND AND AIMS: We aimed to compare the risk of frailty in older adults with incident inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and matched non-IBD comparators and assess the association between frailty and future hospitalizations and mortality.

METHODS: In a cohort of patients with incident IBD ≥60 years of age from 2007 to 2016 in Sweden identified using nationwide registers, we defined frailty using Hospital Frailty Risk Score. We compared prevalence of frailty in patients with IBD with age, sex, place of residency- and calendar year-matched population comparators. In the IBD cohort, we used Cox proportional hazards modeling to examine the associations between frailty risk and hospitalizations or mortality.

RESULTS: We identified 10,590 patients with IBD, 52% female with a mean age of 71 years of age, matched to 103,398 population-based comparators. Among patients with IBD, 39% had no risk for frailty, 49% had low risk for frailty, and 12% had higher risk for frailty. Mean Hospital Frailty Risk Score was 1.9 in IBD and 0.9 in matched comparators (P < .01). Older adults with IBD at higher risk for frailty had a 20% greater risk for mortality at 3 years compared with those who were not frail. Compared with nonfrail older patients with IBD, patients at higher risk for frailty had increased mortality (hazard ratio [HR], 3.22, 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.86-3.61), all-cause hospitalization (HR, 2.42; 95% CI, 2.24-2.61), and IBD-related hospitalization (HR, 1.50; 95% CI, 1.35-1.66). These associations were not attenuated after adjusting for comorbidities.

CONCLUSIONS: Frailty is more prevalent in older adults with IBD than in matched comparators. Among older patients with IBD, frailty is associated with increased risk for hospitalizations and mortality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2358-2365.e11
Issue number10
Early online date6 Jan 2022
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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