Patients with active inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have elevated and activated myeloid leukocytes, which infiltrate the intestinal mucosa. A significant proportion of IBD patients do not respond adequately to conventional treatment regimes. Studies have suggested that treatment with granulocyte monocyte apheresis (GMA) could be a safe and efficacious alternative for these patients. We evaluated the efficacy and safety of granulocyte/monocyte apheresis in patients with IBD in a retrospective cohort study, conducted from a single center in Stockholm. Clinical details from consecutive apheresis treated patients were retrospectively reviewed from 2004 to 2012. A total of 37 patients were included, 23 patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) and 14 with Crohn's disease (CD). Clinical response was seen in 11 patients (30%) and complete remission in 11 patients (30%). The remission rate was higher in UC patients compared to CD patients, 39% (N = 9) and 14% (N = 2) respectively. A total of 9 patients experienced adverse events. Most frequently reported was headache (N = 4). GMA seems to be a valuable adjuvant treatment regime in the care of patients with refractory IBD.
Keywords: Crohn's disease; Granulocyte monocyte adsoption apheresis; Inflammatory bowel disease; Ulcerative colitis.
© 2016 International Society for Apheresis, Japanese Society for Apheresis, and Japanese Society for Dialysis Therapy.