Postoperative Inflammatory Response in Crohn’s Patients: A Comparative Study

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Background and Aims:

Surgery for Crohn’s disease [CD] can be complicated by an enhanced inflammatory response. This retrospective study aims to compare the inflammatory response measured by C-reactive protein [CRP] in patients operated for CD with patients undergoing similar surgery for colorectal cancer [CRC].


All CD patients undergoing an ileocaecal resection between February 2001 and December 2013 were retrieved from a prospectively maintained database. The same number of patients with a CRC of the ascending colon, undergoing a laparoscopic right hemicolectomy between March 2009 and June 2014, were retrieved from a CRC database. CRP level during the first 7 postoperative days was used as primary outcome.


Totals of 112 consecutive CD patients (male 40.2%; median age: 32.3 yrs; interquartile range [IQR]: 25.2–45.1) and 112 consecutive CRC patients [male 53.6%; median age 71.6 yrs; IQR: 64.7–77.5] were included. Postoperative CRP level in the CD group was on average 27% higher compared with the CRC group [p = 0.02]. The day-specific differences in CRP values were 21% (p = 0.021, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 3% 41%), 41% [p = 0.005, 95% CI: 11% – 79%], 49% [p = 0.007, 95% CI: 11% – 96%], and 49% [p = 0.006, 95% CI: 12% – 100%] higher for CD patients at Days 1, 4, 5, and 6 respectively. The difference in postoperative CRP level was partially due to differences in preoperative CRP level.


CD patients develop a higher postoperative CRP level, probably reflecting an enhanced postoperative inflammatory response, which may be triggered by a higher preoperative inflammatory state.

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