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AGA releases official guidance for patients with IBD during the COVID-19 pandemic

Today, the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) published new COVID-19 guidance for gastroenterologists treating patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): AGA Clinical Practice Update on Management of Inflammatory Bowel Disease During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Expert Commentary.

While the COVID-19 pandemic is a global health emergency, patients with IBD have particular concerns for their risk for infection and management of their medical therapies. This clinical practice update incorporates the emerging understanding of COVID-19 and summarizes available guidance for patients with IBD and the providers who take care of them.

Recommendations for gastroenterologists & their patients who have IBD:

1. During this pandemic, patients with IBD should continue IBD therapies including scheduled infusions.

2. Having IBD does not appear to increase the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection or the development of COVID-19.

3. Instructions for patients with IBD who develop COVID-19 (fever, respiratory symptoms, digestive symptoms, etc.):

a. Stop thiopurines, methotrexate, tofacitinib.

b. Stop biological therapies (including anti-TNF, ustekinumab, vedolizumab).

c. Can restart therapies after complete resolution of COVID-19 symptoms. Patients should

always speak with their health care team before stopping any medication.

4. Doctors should submit cases of IBD and confirmed COVID-19 to the SECURE-IBD registry at COVIDIBD.org.

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  • Posted on April 11, 2020