Objectives: To evaluate the influence of the indication of the first surgical procedure on the prognosis of Crohn's disease.
Methods: We compared retrospectively the long-term course of 179 patients operated on for a perforating disease and 322 patients operated on for a nonperforating disease. Mean follow-up was 11 years and 2 months in the two groups.
Results: Forty of 179 (25%) and 106 of 322 (33%) patients with perforating and nonperforating diseases underwent a second intestinal resection, respectively. The patients who had been operated on for a perforating disease were significantly more often reoperated on for the same indication, and conversely. Patients with perforating diseases experienced less second resections (actuarial rates: 37 +/- 11% vs 51 +/- 8% at ten years respectively), less post-surgical handicaps (mean index 24.9 vs 27.9), and fewer patients required immunosuppressive drugs (25 vs 35%).
Conclusion: Long-term prognosis of perforating Crohn's disease does not appear to be more severe than that of nonperforating disease.