An induction or flare of arthritis and/or sacroiliitis by vedolizumab in inflammatory bowel disease: a case series

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In inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a new biological therapy has recently been approved. Vedolizumab is a humanised IgG1 monoclonal antibody to α4β7 integrin that modulates gut lymphocyte trafficking. Although an exclusively local effect of vedolizumab could be expected based on the restricted presence of the α4β7–mucosal vascular addressin cell adhesion molecule 1 complex in the gut, past combined success with anti-tumour necrosis factor, and previous demonstration of α4β7 integrin in the joint, led to the expectation of a therapeutic efficacy in spondyloarthritis. Nonetheless, the effect of vedolizumab on extraintestinal manifestations—and especially the joint—has not been reported so far.

Case report

A series of five patients with IBD who were treated with vedolizumab and promptly developed new onset or exacerbation of sacroiliitis or arthritis are reported.


Vedolizumab therapy does not seem to show any efficacy in and might even induce arthritis and/or sacroiliitis. However, larger cohort studies are needed to provide information on the prevalence, the evolution and underlying mechanism.

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