Objectives: We developed and validated an ultrasonographic index of intestinal inflammatory activity for patients with Crohn's disease.
Methods: Fifty-five patients with Crohn's disease were examined by transabdominal ultrasonography. The pathological findings were classified into three types (A-C) on the basis of wall thickness and wall stratification. To calculate the index, we divided the intestine into eight segments, and the scores for each segment were summed to calculate the index (ultrasonographic activity index of Crohn's disease) as follows: 1 point for type A lesions, [wall thickness (mm) -2] x 2 for type B lesions, and [wall thickness (mm) -2] x 4 for type C lesions. Endoscopic or barium contrast findings were also scored in a similar fashion, with the following parametric scores: 10 for cobblestoning, 5 for longitudinal ulcers, 3 for aphthoid ulcers, and 1 for chronic inflammatory changes.
Results: A strong correlation (r2 = 0.62, P<0.01) was found between the ultrasound index and the endoscopic/radiological score, while weak correlations were found between the endoscopic/radiological score and the Crohn's disease activity index or biological indices of inflammation.
Conclusions: Our results show that the ultrasonographic activity index of Crohn's disease can be of value in the ongoing assessment and treatment of patients.