The Real-World Effectiveness and Safety of Ustekinumab in the Treatment of Crohn's Disease: Results From the SUCCESS Consortium

Am J Gastroenterol. 2023 Feb 1;118(2):317-328. doi: 10.14309/ajg.0000000000002047. Epub 2022 Sep 30.


Introduction: We evaluated the real-world effectiveness and safety of ustekinumab (UST) in patients with Crohn's disease (CD).

Methods: This study used a retrospective, multicenter, multinational consortium of UST-treated CD patients. Data included patient demographics, disease phenotype, disease activity, treatment history, and concomitant medications. Cumulative rates of clinical, steroid-free, endoscopic, and radiographic remissions were assessed using time-to-event analysis, and clinical predictors were assessed by using multivariate Cox proportional hazard analyses. Serious infections and adverse events were defined as those requiring hospitalization or treatment discontinuation.

Results: A total of 1,113 patients (51.8% female, 90% prior antitumor necrosis factor exposure) were included, with a median follow-up of 386 days. Cumulative rates of clinical, steroid-free, endoscopic, and radiographic remissions at 12 months were 40%, 32%, 39%, and 30%, respectively. Biologic-naive patients achieved significantly higher rates of clinical and endoscopic remissions at 63% and 55%, respectively. On multivariable analyses, prior antitumor necrosis factor (hazard ratio, 0.72; 95% confidence interval, 0.49-0.99) and vedolizumab exposure (hazard ratio, 0.65; 95% confidence interval, 0.48-0.88) were independently associated with lower likelihoods of achieving endoscopic remission. In patients who experienced loss of remission, 77 of 102 (75%) underwent dose optimization, and 44 of 77 (57%) achieved clinical response. An additional 152 of 681 patients (22.3%) were dose-optimized because of primary nonresponse incomplete response to UST, of whom 40.1% (61 of 152) responded. Serious infections occurred in 3.4% of patients while other noninfectious adverse events (lymphoma [n = 1], arthralgia [n = 6], rash [n = 6], headache [n = 3], hepatitis [n = 3], hair loss [n = 3], neuropathy [n = 1], and vasculitis [n = 1]) occurred in 2.4% of patients.

Discussion: UST represents a safe and effective treatment option for CD, with 40% of patients from a highly refractory cohort achieving clinical remission by 12 months. The greatest treatment effect of UST was seen in biologic-naive patients, and dose escalation may recapture clinical response.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Biological Products* / therapeutic use
  • Crohn Disease* / drug therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Necrosis / drug therapy
  • Remission Induction
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Ustekinumab / adverse effects


  • Ustekinumab
  • Biological Products