Switching from intravenous to subcutaneous vedolizumab maintenance treatment in patients with inflammatory bowel disease followed by therapeutic drug monitoring

Scand J Gastroenterol. 2023 Jul-Dec;58(8):863-873. doi: 10.1080/00365521.2023.2176252. Epub 2023 Feb 17.


Objective: Vedolizumab (VDZ) for subcutaneous (SC) administration has recently become available. We aimed to assess feasibility, safety and clinical outcome when switching from intravenous (IV) to SC VDZ maintenance treatment in a real world cohort of patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) followed by therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM).

Methods: Eligible IBD patients were switched from IV to SC treatment and assessed six months prior to switch, at baseline and six, twelve and twenty-six weeks after switch. Primary outcome was proportion of patients on SC treatment after 26 weeks. Secondary outcomes included adverse events (AEs), clinical disease activity, biochemical markers, treatment interval, serum-VDZ (s-VDZ), preferred route of administration and health-related quality of life.

Results: In total, 108 patients were switched. After 26 weeks, 100 patients (92.6%) were still on SC treatment and median s-VDZ was 47.6 mg/L (IQR 41.3 - 54.6). The most frequent AE was injection site reaction (ISR), reported by 20 patients (18.5%). There were no clinically significant changes in disease activity, biochemical markers and quality of life. The proportion of patients preferring SC administration increased from 28.0% before switch to 59.4% after 26 weeks (p < 0.001).

Conclusions: Nine out of ten patients still received SC treatment after 26 weeks. No change in disease activity occurred, and levels of serum VDZ increased. Although almost one fifth of patients experienced ISRs, a higher proportion favored SC administration at 26 weeks. This study demonstrates that SC maintenance treatment is a safe and feasible alternative to IV treatment.

Keywords: Crohn’s disease; Inflammatory bowel disease; therapeutic drug monitoring; ulcerative colitis; vedolizumab.

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers
  • Colitis, Ulcerative* / drug therapy
  • Drug Monitoring
  • Gastrointestinal Agents / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases* / chemically induced
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases* / drug therapy
  • Quality of Life
  • Treatment Outcome


  • vedolizumab
  • Gastrointestinal Agents
  • Biomarkers