Susceptibility of Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease to COVID-19 Compared with Their Households

Amir Anushiravani, Bahar Saberzadeh-Ardestani, Homayoon Vahedi, Hafez Fakheri, Fariborz Mansour-Ghanaei, Iradj Maleki, Siavosh Nasseri-Moghaddam, Hasan Vosoghinia, Mohammad Reza Ghadir, Ahmad Hormati, Amir Kasaeian, Amir Reza Radmard, Bardia Khosravi, Masoud Malekzadeh, Sudabeh Alatab, Anahita Sadeghi, Nayyereh Aminisani, Hossein Poustchi, Ali Reza Sima, Reza Malekzadeh



Immunosuppressive agents used in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) could potentially increase the risk of COVID-19 (Coronavirus disease 2019). We aimed to compare COVID-19 frequency in patients with IBD with their households and identify the related risk factors.


 Firstly, a multi-centered, observational study on 2,110 patients with IBD and 2110 age-matched household members was conducted to compare COVID-19 frequency. Secondly, the data of patients with IBD and COVID-19 who had called the COVID-19 hotline were added. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate the effect of age, type and severity of IBD, the number of comorbidities, and medications on the frequency of COVID-19 among the patients with IBD.


The prevalence of COVID-19 in patients with IBD and household groups was similar [34 (1.61%) versus 35 (1.65%) (p = 0.995)]. The prevalence of COVID-19 increased from 2.1% to 7.1% in those with three or more comorbidities (p = 0.015) and it was significantly higher in those with severe IBD (p = 0.026). The multivariable analysis only showed a significant association with anti-TNF monotherapy (OR:2.5, CI: 0.97-6.71, p = 0.05), and other medications were not associated with COVID-19.


The prevalence of COVID-19 in patients with IBD was similar to the household members. Only patients with IBD receiving anti-TNF monotherapy had a higher risk of COVID-19 susceptibility. This finding could be attributed to the higher exposure to the virus during administration in health care facilities.



Inflammatory bowel disease; COVID-19; Medications; Frequency

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