Objective: Theoretical concern exists that rapid luminal healing in Crohn's disease (CD) with therapies like infliximab increases the risk of intestinal stenosis, stricture, or obstruction (SSOs).
Methods: Data were analyzed from the ongoing observational TREAT (the Crohn's Therapy, Resource, Evaluation, and Assessment Tool) Registry and ACCENT I (A Crohn's Disease Clinical Trial Evaluating Infliximab in a New Long-Term Treatment Regimen) study. Investigators reported SSOs as adverse events or serious adverse events.
Results: In TREAT, SSOs occurred at a significantly higher rate in patients treated with infliximab compared with patients who received other treatments only (1.95 events/100 patient-years vs 0.99 events/100 patient-years; p < 0.001). Using multivariable analyses, however, infliximab therapy was not associated with SSO development. CD severity at the time of event onset (hazard ratio (HR) = 2.35, 95% confidence internal (CI) 1.35-4.09); CD duration (HR = 1.02, 95% CI 1.00-1.04); ileal disease (HR = 1.56, 95% CI 1.04-2.36); and new corticosteroid use (HR = 2.85, 95% CI 1.23-6.57) were associated with SSOs. In ACCENT I, no increase in SSOs was reported in patients who received infliximab maintenance therapy compared with those who received episodic therapy, despite higher median cumulative infliximab exposure. Additionally, there was no increase in SSO development with rapid mucosal healing (healing at week 10).
Conclusions: Although unadjusted analyses suggested that patients who received infliximab were twice as likely to develop SSOs, multivariable analysis adjusting for other factors demonstrated that only disease duration, disease severity, ileal disease, and new corticosteroid use were significantly associated with SSO development.