Endoscopic balloon dilation is a promising procedure to improve symptoms of intestinal stricture in patients with Crohn's disease (CD). However, the long-term efficacy of endoscopic balloon dilation combined with immunomodulatory drugs remains unclear. The aim of the present study is to investigate whether prior use of immunomodulatory drugs affects the clinical outcome of endoscopic balloon dilation for intestinal stricture in CD.Patients and Methods
Between January 2004 and December 2011, 83 dilations were carried out in 25 patients with CD. Median follow-up period was 46 months. Patients were categorized into two groups based on their medications at the first endoscopic balloon dilation: early immunomodulatory drug-induction group (early IM-induction group) in which patients were already treated with immunomodulatory drugs before the dilation; and post-immunomodulatory drug-induction group (post-IM-induction group) in which patients were not yet treated withimmunomodulatory drugs before dilation. We compared the long-term cumulative non-surgical rate and the mean number of dilation procedures per patient between early and post-IM-induction groups to clarify the influence of prior use of immunomodulatory drugs on the clinical outcome of endoscopic balloon dilation.Results
There was a significant difference in the mean number of dilation procedures per patient between the early IM-induction and post-IM-induction groups (P = 0.04), although no significant difference in the cumulative non-surgical rate was observed between the two groups (P = 0.14).Conclusion
Prior use of immunomodulatory drugs may improve the clinical outcome of endoscopic balloon dilation for intestinal stricture in CD.