In this study, Dr James Allison and colleagues evaluated long-term outcomes of patients with severe ulcerative colitis after their first hospitalization for the disease.
The research team followed-up a cohort of 656 patients hospitalized for ulcerative colitis for a 9 year period - from hospitalization in 1996 until 2004.
The team found that 20% of patients underwent colectomy during their initial hospitalization.
Of the remaining patients, 95% were discharged on a steroid taper.
At 1 year after discharge, 29% of patients had been rehospitalized, and an additional 10% required colectomy.
At 1 and 5 years after discharge, 34% and 26% received at least a 90-day supply of steroid in the preceding 9 months.
The team found that the risk of rehospitalization and colectomy were unrelated to the patient's age, sex, or ethnicity.
Dr Allison’s team concluded, “The risk for colectomy in patients hospitalized for the first time with severe ulcerative colitis is 20%.”
“In the 3 months after hospitalization the risk for colectomy is 6%”.
“After that, risks appear to decrease proportionate to the time since initial hospitalization.”