Vitamin A therapy has been claimed in isolated reports to be of benefit to patients with Crohn's disease. To investigate this further, 86 patients were entered into a long-term double-blind study of vitamin A, 50,000 U twice daily, as compared with placebo. After a mean of 14.1 mo of treatment there was no significant difference between the groups as measured by a variety of activity indices (including the National Cooperative Crohn's Disease Activity Index), the number of acute attacks, and the surgical rate. No toxic effects of vitamin A were observed during the study. In this study vitamin A has not been shown to be of benefit to patients with Crohn's disease who are in remission.