Beclomethasone dipropionate (3 mg) enemas combined with oral 5-ASA (2.4 g) in the treatment of ulcerative colitis not responsive to oral 5-ASA alone

Ital J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 1998 Jun;30(3):254-7.


Background/aims: Beclomethasone dipropionate is one of the topical corticosteroids which appear to have minimal systemic effects. We evaluated whether combined therapy with Beclomethasone dipropionate enemas and oral 5-aminosalicylic acid could be effective in patients suffering from ulcerative colitis not responsive to oral 5-aminosalicylic acid as monotherapy.

Patients: In twenty patients, non responders to 5-aminosalicylic acid treatment (2.4-3.6 g/day) given for at least 6 weeks, Beclomethasone dipropionate enemas (3 mg/60 ml/day) were added for 4 weeks.

Methods: Efficacy of the combination was evaluated before and at the end of the treatment using a clinical, endoscopic and histological score.

Results: After a four-week treatment period, a significant clinical improvement in stool frequency (p < 0.01), stool consistency (p < 0.001), blood (p < 0.001) and mucus in stools (p < 0.05), was observed. Endoscopy and biopsy confirmed an improvement in the activity score at the end of the treatment (p < 0.001). Six patients (30%) achieved remission, ten patients showed an improvement (50%) and four (20%) showed no benefits. No adverse event was observed.

Conclusions: Beclomethasone dipropionate enemas combined with oral 5-aminosalicylic acid may be a safe and useful therapeutic approach in the treatment of ulcerative colitis not responsive to oral 5-aminosalicylic acid alone.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Administration, Topical
  • Adult
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use*
  • Beclomethasone / administration & dosage
  • Beclomethasone / therapeutic use*
  • Colitis, Ulcerative / drug therapy*
  • Colitis, Ulcerative / pathology
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Enema
  • Female
  • Glucocorticoids
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mesalamine / administration & dosage
  • Mesalamine / therapeutic use*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Glucocorticoids
  • Mesalamine
  • Beclomethasone