BACKGROUND: Secondary loss of response to biological therapy is a challenge when treating Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). Currently, no single marker has been found to be valid as a prognostic indicator of response to biologic therapy in patients with CD and UC. In this study, we aimed to assess whether disease activity after 14 weeks of biologic therapy has a prognostic impact on surgery and steroid-free remission during 6 months following completion of induction therapy.
METHODS: In an unselected cohort study based on data from 4 national Danish health registries, we identified 493 patients with UC and 620 patients with CD who completed induction therapy with biologics from 2016 to 2019. Following induction therapy with biologics, we defined disease activity based on C-reactive protein and clinical scores of disease activity. The composite endpoint, "not being well treated," included surgery or use of corticosteroid within 6 months following induction therapy.
RESULTS: In patients with UC with disease activity following induction therapy, the adjusted odds ratio for surgery or steroid treatment during 6 months of follow-up was 3.9 (95% CI, 1.6-9.3) compared with patients without disease activity, and in patients with CD, the adjusted odds ratio was 3.6 (95% CI, 1.7-7.6).
CONCLUSIONS: A positive treatment response to biologic treatment after induction therapy (measured by C-reactive protein and clinical scores) predicts a better short-term outcome in patients with CD and UC.