JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Infliximab safety profile and long-term applicability in inflammatory bowel disease: 9-year experience in clinical practice.

BACKGROUND: Most available data on infliximab therapy come from large, short-term, pivotal RCTs and concerns about long-term safety profile still remain.

AIM: To evaluate the long-term safety profile of infliximab in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in a clinical practice setting.

METHODS: Since 1999, all IBD patients treated with infliximab were registered and clinical outcomes prospectively recorded up to March 2008, loss of follow-up or patient's death. Infliximab regimens and preventive measures were in accordance with the prevalent guidelines or with the manufacturer's recommendations.

RESULTS: One hundred fifty-two patients were included (121 Crohn's disease, 24 ulcerative colitis, 7 indeterminate colitis), with a median of 5 infliximab infusions (IQR 3-8) and 87% of patients received at least three infusions. Seventy-nine per cent of them received concomitant immunomodulators and 70% were pre-medicated with hydrocortisone from the first infusion. After a median follow-up of 142 weeks, 13% presented infusion reactions, 13% viral or bacterial infections and two patients developed neoplasia. The mortality rate was 2.6% (four patients).

CONCLUSIONS: Infliximab therapy is safe when the recommended preventive measures are implemented, with a rate of serious adverse events less than 10%. No new safety signals were found.

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