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  • Author: A. Voiosu x
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Rapid fecal calprotectin testing predicts mucosal healing better than C-reactive protein and serum tumor necrosis factor α in patients with ulcerative colitis


Background and Aims. Serum and fecal biomarkers have been used as noninvasive methods for assessing disease activity in ulcerative colitis. C-reactive protein, serum tumor necrosis factor-α and fecal calprotectin are among the most promising such biomarkers. However, their role in the management of ulcerative colitis patients remains to be clarified. We aimed to evaluate the accuracy of C-reactive protein, fecal calprotectin and tumor necrosis factor-α in detecting clinical and endoscopic activity and predicting disease outcome.

Methods. A cohort of ulcerative colitis patients was prospectively evaluated for clinical and endoscopic disease activity using the Mayo score. Serum C-reactive protein and tumor necrosis factor-α levels were measured and a point-of-care method was used for determining Calprotectin levels.

Results. Fifty-three patients with ulcerative colitis were followed for a median of 12 months. Fecal calprotectin and C-reactive protein levels were significantly higher in patients with clinically active disease at baseline, but only calprotectin levels correlated with endoscopic activity. Calprotectin values over 300 μg/g had 60% sensitivity and 90% specificity for detecting active endoscopic disease and 61% sensitivity and 89% specificity for predicting mucosal healing.

Conclusion. Rapid calprotectin testing is a better predictor of mucosal healing than serum biomarkers and it could improve the management of ulcerative colitis patients by decreasing the need for invasive investigations.

Open access
Factors Influencing Complication Rates at Colonic Polypectomy: A Prospective Study from a Tertiary-Referral Center


Background and aims. Colon polypectomy decreases the incidence of colorectal cancer and related mortality. Several factors such as the size, location and type of polyp as well as endoscopist experience have been shown to correlate with the risk of ensuing procedure-related complications. This study aims to evaluate the impact of polyp and endoscopist-related factors on the rate of postpolypectomy complication in a real-life setting.

Methods. During the study period all polypectomies performed in our unit were reported on a standard form that included data on polyp type (flat, sessile, pedunculated), size, location in the colon, resection method, endoscopist volume and procedure-related complications arising up to 30 days. The main outcome was the complication rate of polypectomies. The factors that associated with a higher risk of complications were assessed on univariate and multivariate analysis.

Results. 244 polyp resections from 95 patients were included in the analysis. 199 polyps were resected by low-volume endoscopists (44.7%) and 135 polypectomies were performed by highvolume endoscopists (55.3%). On multivariate analysis only polyp size correlated with the risk of procedure-related complications.

Conclusion. Polyp size is the most important risk factor for procedure-related complications. Both high and low-volume endoscopists have a low overall rate of serious complications.

Open access
Preparation regimen is more important than patient-related factors: a randomized trial comparing a standard bowel preparation before colonoscopy with an individualized approach


Background. Optimal bowel preparation is one of the most important factors affecting the quality of colonoscopy. Several patient-related factors are known to influence the quality of bowel cleansing but randomized trials in this area are lacking. We aimed to compare an individualized bowel prep strategy based on patient characteristics to a standard preparation regimen.

Material and Methods. We conducted an endoscopist-blinded multicenter randomized control-trial. The Boston Bowel Prep Score (BBPS) was used to assess quality of bowel preparation and a 10 point visual analogue scale to assess patient comfort during bowel prep. Patients were randomised to either the standard regimens of split-dose 4L polyethylene-glycol (group A), split-dose sodium picosulphate/magnesium citrate (group B) or to either of the two depending on their responses to a 3-item questionnaire (individualized preparation, group C).

Results. 185 patients were randomized during the study period and 143 patients were included in the final analysis. Patients in the individualized group had a median BBPS of 7 compared to a median of 6 in the standard group (p = 0.7). Also, there was no significant difference in patients’ comfort scores, irrespective of study group or laxative regimen. However, on multivariable analysis, a split-dose 4L polyethylene-glycol was an independent predictor for achieving a BBPS>6 (OR 3.7, 95% CI 1.4-9.8), regardless of patient-related factors.

Conclusion. The choice of laxative seems to be more important than patient-related factors in predicting bowel cleansing. Comfort during bowel prep is not influenced by the type of strategy used.

Open access
Different effects of anti-TNF-alpha biologic drugs on the small bowel macroscopic inflammation in patients with ankylosing spondylitis


Background & Aims. Considering the ability of anti-TNF alpha drugs to lower the burden intestinal inflammation in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), and the similarity between IBD and ankylosing spondylitis (AS) regarding inflammatory intestinal involvement, we aimed to investigate the impact of anti-TNF alpha biologic therapy on subclinical intestinal inflammation in AS patients.

Methods. Between January 2008 and December 2013, 38 AS patients and 23 controls were enrolled in the study and investigated with small bowel videocapsule endoscopy examination and ileocolonoscopy. Each tertile of the small bowel (proximal, mid and distal) was assessed by calculating the Lewis score based on the image stream.

Results. The Lewis scores were significantly higher in the AS group compared to controls (580.9 ± 818 vs. 81 ± 121, p<0.001). 16 patients (42.1%) were on anti-TNF alpha therapy (Adalimumab (n = 5), Infliximab (n = 5) or Etanercept (n = 6)).31.3% of them used NSAIDs simultaneously, compared with 77.3% of the other patients (p<0.01). Their Lewis scores were lower compared to the other patients for the entire small bowel (306 ± 164 vs. 790 ± 1038, p = 0.015), its proximal and distal tertiles (238 ± 154 vs. 560 ± 543, p = 0.021, and 140 ± 189 vs. 300 ± 220, p = 0.027, respectively). The Lewis score was also lower in patients receiving Adalimumab/Infliximab compared to those on Etanercept for the entire bowel and its distal tertile (262 ± 165 vs. 380 ± 148, p = 0.069 and 62 ± 101 vs. 273 ± 236, p = 0.060, respectively).

Conclusion. Anti-TNF alpha therapy in patients with AS reduces the subclinical intestinal inflammation, but the magnitude seems to depend upon the class anti-TNF alpha agent used (Clinical Trials. gov NCT00768950).

Open access