Ulcerative colitis: Prevention of relapse

Makoto Naganuma, Atsushi Sakuraba, Toshifumi Hibi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The clinical management of ulcerative colitis (UC) involves first treating the acute symptoms to induce remission, and then successfully maintaining it. Oral 5-aminosalicylic acids are safe and useful for maintaining remission in patients with UC. In terms of adherence, a once-daily form of 5-aminosalicylic acid is superior in maintaining remission as compared with split dosing. Patients at high risk of relapse may be candidates for treatment with thiopurines and/or biologics in the early stages of UC. Calcineurin inhibitors, such as cyclosporine and tacrolimus, are effective for severe, steroid-refractory UC patients. It is suggested that these patients use thiopurines as their maintenance therapy once they achieve remission with calcineurin inhibitors. Recent studies have confirmed that biologics are effective for inducing clinical and endoscopic remission of UC, and thus they may improve long-term prognosis of UC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-351
Number of pages11
JournalExpert Review of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 May


  • adherence
  • aminosalicylates
  • biologics
  • immunomodulators
  • prevention of relapse
  • ulcerative colitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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