Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), mainly including Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), is a chronic non‐specific intestinal disease. The chronic, protracted course of IBD severely affects the patient's quality of life. The treatment of IBD has gone through three phases. Glucocorticoids were introduced in the 1950s, while immunosuppressive agents began to be used in the 1960s, and therapeutics is now in the era of biological agents. With the progression and continuous standardization of its treatment, treatment efficacy for IBD has made great progress, resulted in significantly decreased complications and mortality in the patients. However, monotherapy or combination therapy with these drugs will change patient's immune status, which may bring corresponding issues, particularly an increased risk of opportunistic infection.Opportunistic infection refers to micro‐organisms that have limited or no pathogenic capacity in healthy human bodies but cause diseases or induce infections when the immune system is compromised by other diseases such as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) or drug medications such as immunosuppressive agents. IBD patients are at a high risk for opportunistic infections. First, the disease itself can cause a reduced nutritional status in IBD patients. Second, the application of glucocorticoids, immunosuppressive and biological agents can severely inhibit patient's immunity.
Journal of Digestive Diseases – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
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