Micronutrients in Chilean inflammatory bowel disease patients: Cross-sectional study

Patricio Ibáñez, Daniela Simian, Daniela Fluxá, Lilian Flores, Udo Kronberg, Carolina Figueroa, Jaime Lubascher, Rodrigo Quera*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) patients often present with nutritional disorders that affect both macronutrient and micronutrient levels. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are typically more frequent in Crohn’s disease (CD) patients than other IBD patients. However, some studies have shown that these deficiencies can also be present in ulcerative colitis (UC) patients, even in those in remission. Aims To describe the prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies in patients diagnosed with IBD and to correlate these micronutrient deficiencies with demographic, clinical and disease characteristics. Methods A cross-sectional study of patients in the IBD program who were 18 years and older was completed. Clinical characteristics and disease activity indexes were assessed. Body Mass Index (BMI), haematocrit, serum albumin, serum iron profile, serum 25(OH) D, vitamin B12, folate, zinc and copper were measured. Results Ninety-one patients with IBD were included: 46 patients (50.5 per cent) with UC and 45 patients (49.5 per cent) with CD. At least one micronutrient deficiency was found in 39.5 per cent of patients, 35.1 per cent had two deficiencies, and 12 per cent had three or more deficiencies. Iron, zinc, copper, and vitamin B12 deficiencies were found in 33 per cent, 22 per cent, 11 per cent and 10 per cent of patients, respectively. No folate deficiencies were found. Low levels of serum 25(OH) D were detected in 76 per cent of patients. The mean BMI was 24.3 (SD 3.4), and the mean serum albumin level was 4.0g/l (SD 0.4). Conclusion Micronutrient deficiencies were frequent in our study cohort and did not correlate with macronutrient status. Measurement of macronutrients and micronutrients should become a routine assessment in IBD patients to improve patient care and to avoid negative repercussions on disease activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-52
Number of pages10
JournalAustralasian Medical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017, Australasian Medical Journal Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Crohn’s disease
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Micronutrients
  • Ulcerative colitis


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