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Biological therapies improve inflammatory bowel disease symptoms, national audit finds

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f5340 (Published 29 August 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f5340
  1. Mark Gould
  1. 1London

Adults and children with inflammatory bowel disease are reporting decreases in the severity of their condition and fewer are having surgery after being treated with monoclonal antibody therapies.

Data from the first national report of biological therapies show that 62% of adult patients and 73% of paediatric patients saw the severity of their disease decrease after 12 weeks of treatment with two drugs—infliximab, a chimeric anti-TNFα monoclonal antibody, and adalimumab, a recombinant human immunoglobulin (IgG1) monoclonal antibody—known collectively as biological therapies.1

Inflammatory bowel disease affects approximately 240 000 people in the United Kingdom and patients with ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease will often require surgery during their lifetime. Biological therapies have been available since the 1990s and are used extensively in treating rheumatological disease and have also been used to treat patients with severe Crohn’s disease.

The …

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