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Dig Liver Dis. 2012 Sep;44(9):723-8. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2012.03.010. Epub 2012 Apr 11.

Risk factors and outcome of acute severe lower gastrointestinal bleeding in Crohn's disease.

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Department of Gastroenterology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Republic of Korea.



Acute severe lower gastrointestinal bleeding in Crohn's disease is uncommon, but is a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge. We aimed to identify risk factors for acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding in patients with Crohn's disease and assess the cumulative probability of rebleeding in relation to therapeutic modality.


We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 70 Crohn's patients (4.0%) with acute severe lower gastrointestinal bleeding and compared these with matched 140 Crohn's patients without bleeding.


The cumulative probability of bleeding after diagnosis of Crohn's disease was 1.7%, 3.6%, 6.5%, and 10.3% after 1, 5, 10, and 20 years respectively. At presentation, the median haemoglobin concentration was 8.4g/dL (range, 4.7-11.6g/dL). Use of azathioprine/6-mercaptopurine decreased the risk of lower gastrointestinal bleeding (OR: 0.525, 95% CI: 0.304-0.906, p=0.021). Bleeding recurred in 29 patients (41.4%) after a median time of 3.2 months (range, 15 days-94.7 months). One out of eleven patients treated with infliximab rebled. The cumulative probability of rebleeding tended to be lower in patients treated with infliximab than in those receiving other treatments (p=0.076).


Azathioprine/6-mercaptopurine may reduce the risk of acute severe lower gastrointestinal bleeding. The rebleeding is common, but infliximab may decrease rebleeding.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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