Background & aims: Prevention of postoperative recurrence after resection for Crohn's disease (CD) would be of great clinical benefit. The efficacy of oral budesonide for prevention of endoscopic recurrence was evaluated in patients undergoing resection for ileal or ileocecal CD.
Methods: Sixty-three patients received budesonide and 66 received placebo in a double-blind, randomized trial with parallel groups. Ileocolonoscopy, including biopsy, was performed after 3 and 12 months. Indications for surgery were fibrostenosis (78 patients), disease activity (41), and other reasons (10).
Results: The frequency of endoscopic recurrence did not differ between the groups at 3 and 12 months. In patients with disease activity as indication for surgery, the endoscopic recurrence rate at the anastomosis was lower in the budesonide group at 3 months, although not significantly (21% vs. 47%; P = 0.11), and at 12 months (32% vs. 65%; P = 0.047). There was no such difference with respect to fibrostenosis as indication for surgery. No differences in adverse event patterns were found between the two groups.
Conclusions: Oral budesonide, 6 mg daily, offered no benefit in prevention of endoscopic recurrence after surgery for ileal/ileocecal fibrostenotic CD but decreased the recurrence rate in patients who had undergone surgery for disease activity.