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Keywords:

  • Azathioprine;
  • Corticosteroids;
  • Surgery;
  • Ulcerative colitis

Abstract

Aim: Ulcerative Colitis (UC) has an incidence of 1.4 per 100 000 in childhood. There is a paucity of data regarding outcome particularly with the increased use of early immunosuppression. This study reviews outcome at 2 years in a cohort with UC referred to a single centre.

Method: Patients were recruited on the basis of a diagnosis made between 2000 and 2003 as a consecutive cohort. All had UC according to standard clinicopathological criteria. Children with indeterminate colitis were excluded. Follow-up data was collected at 2 years by case notes review.

Results: Thirty-two children are reported. The median age at diagnosis was 11 years (range 2–16). All were treated with corticosteroids and 5-ASA derivatives at diagnosis. The majority of patients (94%, 30/32) received more than one course of steroids. By 2 years azathioprine use was high with 75% (24/32) of patients on treatment for steroid-dependent disease. There were 6 extra-intestinal manifestations and 8 disease related complications occurring in 12 patients (38%). The colectomy rate was 9% (3/32) for unresponsive disease.

Conclusion: There is a high need for Azathioprine in childhood UC. Colectomy rate at 2 years was around 10%. Extra-intestinal manifestations and disease related complications are common.