Intersphincteric proctectomy with end-colostomy for anorectal Crohn's disease results in early and severe proximal colonic recurrence

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Background: Perianal Crohn's disease (CD) represents a more aggressive phenotype of inflammatory bowel disease and often coincides with proctocolitis. This study aims to assess the outcome of patients undergoing proctectomy with end-colostomy.

Methods: A retrospective outcome analysis of 10 consecutive patients who underwent intersphincteric proctectomy with end-colostomy between February 2007 and May 2011 was performed. All patients suffered from refractory distal and perianal CD. The proximal colon was normal at endoscopy. All data were extracted from a prospectively maintained database. The main outcome parameter was disease recurrence and need for completion colectomy.

Results: Severe and early endoscopic recurrence in the proximal colon occurred in 9/10 patients at a median time interval of 9.5 months (range: 1.9–23.6 months). Despite protracted medical treatment, completion colectomy was necessary in 5 patients. One patient, who underwent a second segmental colectomy with a new end-colostomy, showed again endoscopic recurrence and is currently treated with anti-TNF agents.

Conclusions: Intersphincteric proctectomy with colostomy seems to be an ineffective surgery for perianal CD with coexisting proctitis and results in a high risk of recurrence of the disease in the remaining colon. Therefore, despite a normal appearance of the proximal colon, a proctocolectomy with end-ileostomy seems to be the surgical approach of choice in these patients.

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