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Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2001 Feb;13(2):193-4.

Inflammatory bowel disease, azathioprine and skin cancer: case report and literature review.

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Division of Gastroenterology, University Hospital NHS Trust, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, UK.


A 42-year-old blond Caucasian woman taking azathioprine for 8 years developed an intra-epidermal carcinoma of the shin. She regularly used a sun bed to maintain a tan. Although the increased risk of non-melanoma skin cancer in immunosuppressed transplant recipients is well recognized, patients with Crohn's disease are not currently warned of the risk of exposure to ultraviolet light. Individuals with inflammatory bowel disease who take azathioprine, especially those with a fair complexion, should be informed of the potential dangers of sun bathing and should be advised to limit sun exposure.

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