Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast: The increasing prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease

Multi-racial man with stomach pain

Inflammatory bowel disease is common, and it is becoming more common in many populations.

Dr. William Faubion Jr., a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist, says inflammatory bowel disease is an umbrella term that covers Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, and that inflammatory bowel disease is an emerging public health problem.

“The most recent estimates would be that, depending on where you live and what region in the world you live, as many as 1 in 250, to 1 in 300 people may be affected with inflammatory bowel disease,” says Dr. Faubion.

Dr. Faubion points out that inflammatory bowel disease is a combination of a complex genetic disease and an immunologic disease, as well as environmental variants or triggers.

In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Faubion explains that inflammatory bowel disease is very different from irritable bowel syndrome. He also describes symptoms, tests and treatments for inflammatory bowel disease, including how researchers are using artificial intelligence to determine the right medication for each patient.

Watch: The increasing prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease.

Read the full transcript.


For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a nonpatient care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

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