Turkish Journal of Gastroenterology
Original Article

The Impact of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases and Related Medications on COVID-19 Severity and Outcome: A Tertiary Referral Center Experience from Turkey


Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine, Ankara University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey


Department of Internal Medicine, Ankara University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey

Turk J Gastroenterol 2022; 33: 1025-1032
DOI: 10.5152/tjg.2022.22059
Read: 918 Downloads: 329 Published: 01 December 2022

Background: Coronavirus disease-2019 has become a serious pandemic, and still remains a risk despite vaccines that have been devel- oped. Among inflammatory bowel disease patients old age, inflammatory bowel disease activation, the existence of the comorbid dis- ease, and using steroids are known risk factors for severe coronavirus disease-2019. But there are different data for drugs other than corticosteroids used. The aims of the study are to evaluate the prevalence and risk factors of severe coronavirus disease-2019 and the effect of inflammatory bowel disease drugs on severe coronavirus disease-2019.

Methods: In this study among 1195 inflammatory bowel disease patients, 130 patients who were found to be positive for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 between March 2020 and May 2021 were evaluated. Patients were divided into 3 groups as mild, moderate, and severe coronavirus disease-2019.

Results: Among 130 patients, 91 (70%) had mild, 16 (12.3%) had moderate, and 23 (17.7%) had severe coronavirus disease-2019. Being 60 years of age or older (P = .009), having at least 1 comorbid disease (P = .002), and having active inflammatory bowel disease (P = .001) were factors that increased the risk for severe coronavirus disease-2019. The use of mesalazine (P = .35), biologic agents (P = .23), and corticosteroids (P = .42) did not increase the risk of severe coronavirus disease-2019. The use of azathioprine seemed to decrease the risk of severe disease with univariate regression analysis however the significance disappeared with multivariate analysis.

Conclusion: Older age, active inflammatory bowel disease, and existence of at least 1 comorbid disease are risk factors for severe coro- navirus disease-2019. However, drugs used in inflammatory bowel disease management do not increase the risk of severe coronavirus disease-2019. But due to the small number of patients, it is difficult to reach a definite conclusion about corticosteroids.

Cite this article as: Er RE, Duman S, Bodakçı E, Yarcı B, Soykan İ, Törüner M. The impact of inflammatory bowel diseases and related medications on COVID-19 severity and outcome: A tertiary referral center experience from turkey. Turk J Gastroenterol. 2022;33(12):1025-1032.

EISSN 2148-5607