Home Health Smoking and Drinking Up the Risk for Diverticulitis

Smoking and Drinking Up the Risk for Diverticulitis

by News7

TOPLINE:New data link smoking and heavy drinking with an increased risk for diverticulitis, with the greatest risk seen in adults who smoke and consume two or more drinks daily.

METHODOLOGY:Researchers studied 84,232 women in the Nurses’ Health Study II who were 39-52 years old and without known diverticulitis at baseline in 2003. In 2015 and 2017, participants were asked via questionnaire whether they had been diagnosed with diverticulitis requiring antibiotic therapy or hospitalization. Diverticulitis was defined as a computed tomography scan or pathology report of diverticulitis or a provider diagnosis with a clinical presentation consistent with diverticulitis. Smoking was assessed every 2 years and alcohol consumption every 4 years using standard questionnaires. Consistent with prior studies on risk factors for diverticulitis, multivariable models adjusted for age, menopausal hormone status and hormone use, body mass index, physical activity, aspirin/nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug use, intake of fiber and red/processed meat, and other factors were used. TAKEAWAY:During more than 1 million person-years of follow-up, 3018 incident cases of diverticulitis were identified. Both current and past smoking were associated with increased risk for diverticulitis (hazard ratio [HR], 1.2) compared with never smoking, although no dose-response relationship was evident. In an analysis restricted to participants who had surgery for diverticulitis, the magnitude of the association was strengthened (HR, 1.48 for current smokers and 1.46 for past smokers vs never smokers). Consumption of ≥ 30 g/d of alcohol (2+ drinks/day) was associated with an increased risk for incident diverticulitis (HR, 1.26) compared with not drinking. A joint analysis of smoking and alcohol found that individuals who ever smoked and consumed ≥ 30 g/d of alcohol were at the highest risk for diverticulitis (multivariate HR, 1.53) compared with individuals who never smoked and reported no alcohol use. IN PRACTICE:”As there are currently no medical means to prevent diverticulitis other than dietary and lifestyle interventions, counseling patients about the avoidance of smoking and alcohol may help lower the risk for developing diverticulitis,” the authors concluded.

SOURCE:The study, with first author Sara Gunby, MD, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, was published online on December 18, 2023, in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

LIMITATIONS:Diverticulitis diagnoses were self-reported, although a review of a subset of medical records confirmed the diagnosis in more than 90% of cases establishing the validity of self-report in this population. The study was limited to female nurses, so it is possible the findings may not be generalizable to men or other populations. Residual confounding may have impacted the results.

DISCLOSURES:The study was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health. The authors declared no relevant conflicts of interest.

Source : Medscape

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