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 17 February 2018

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News

Changes in primary sclerosing cholangitis over the past 20 years

The latest Scandanavian Journal of Gastroenterology reports that the clinical spectrum of primary sclerosing cholangitis has changed over the past 20 years.

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Magnetic resonance cholangiopancreaticography as a non-invasive diagnostic tool used for diagnosis in primary sclerosing cholangitis.

Together with increased clinical awareness of the disease, it has led to earlier diagnosis.

Dr Annika Bergquist and colleagues from Sweden investigated the clinical presentation of primary sclerosing cholangitis.

The investigative team evaluated its association with inflammatory bowel disease and the development of cholangiocarcinoma.

47% diagnosed after 1998 had symptoms
Scandanavian Journal of Gastroenterology

The investigators conducted their observation at 1 centre over 20 years.

The team diagnosed 246 patients with well-defined primary sclerosing cholangitis, after 16 years of age and treated between 1984 and 2004.

Primary sclerosing cholangitis and inflammatory bowel disease characteristics were retrieved from the patients' medical records.

The team subdivided the patients according to the date of diagnosis.

The investigators compared 185 primary sclerosing cholangitis patients diagnosed before 1998 with 61 patients diagnosed after that date.

The investigative team found that patients diagnosed after 1998 were significantly older at diagnosis.

The team noted that 47% of patients diagnosed after 1998 presented with symptoms vs 63% in patients diagnosed before 1998.

About 69% of patients diagnosed after 1998 had coexisting inflammatory bowel disease vs 82% in those diagnosed before this time.

In the whole group, the team observed that women had significantly more symptoms than men, particularly pruritus.

Dr Bergquist's team concludes, “The clinical spectrum of primary sclerosing cholangitis in Sweden has changed over the past 20 years.”

“Today, primary sclerosing cholangitis patients are older at diagnosis, and the association with inflammatory bowel disease is less frequent.”

Scand J Gastroenterol 2007: 42(1):88-93
22 January 2007

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