Background & aims: The aim of this study was to determine the 1-year outcome after the first course of corticosteroids in an inception cohort of patients with inflammatory bowel disease.
Methods: All patients in Olmsted County, Minnesota, diagnosed with Crohn's disease (n = 173) or ulcerative colitis (n = 185) from 1970 to 1993 who were treated with systemic corticosteroids were identified (4 denied research authorization). Immediate outcome (30 days) and 1-year outcome after the first course of corticosteroids were determined.
Results: Seventy-four (43%) patients with Crohn's disease and 63 (34%) with ulcerative colitis were treated with corticosteroids. Immediate outcomes for Crohn's disease were complete remission in 43 (58%), partial remission in 19 (26%), and no response in 12 (16%). Immediate outcomes for ulcerative colitis were complete remission in 34 (54%), partial remission in 19 (30%), and no response in 10 (16%). One-year outcomes for Crohn's disease were prolonged response in 24 (32%), corticosteroid dependence in 21 (28%), operation in 28 (38%), and lost to follow-up in 1 (1%). One-year outcomes for ulcerative colitis were prolonged response in 31 (49%), corticosteroid dependence in 14 (22%), and operation in 18 (29%).
Conclusions: Most patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis initially respond to corticosteroids. At 1 year, 32% of patients with Crohn's disease and 48% with ulcerative colitis are corticosteroid free without operation.