Announcement: World IBD Day — May 19, 2017

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World IBD Day is recognized on May 19 to raise awareness of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and the two conditions that comprise it: Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, both of which cause chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. World IBD Day is sponsored by the European Federation of Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis Associations, which includes the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation.

In 2015, approximately 3 million adults in the United States self-reported having a diagnosis of IBD, representing a large increase from <2 million in 1999 (1,2). Symptoms can include frequent diarrhea, abdominal pain, and bloody stools, as well as fever, weight loss, fatigue, and night sweats. The cause of IBD is not known, but genetic susceptibilities, problems with the immune system, and environmental exposures, such as smoking and certain microorganisms, all might play a role. Although to date, IBD cannot be prevented, there are ways to manage the symptoms and prevent complications. Additional information is available at Additional information on World IBD Day is available from the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation (


  1. Dahlhamer JM, Zammitti EP, Ward BW, Wheaton AG, Croft JB. Prevalence of inflammatory bowel disease among adults aged ≥18 years—United States, 2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2016;65:1166–9 CrossRef
  2. Nguyen GC, Chong CA, Chong RY. National estimates of the burden of inflammatory bowel disease among racial and ethnic groups in the United States. J Crohn’s Colitis 2014;8:288–95. CrossRef PubMed

Suggested citation for this article: Announcement: World IBD Day — May 19, 2017. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2017;66:516. DOI:

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