Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

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Inflammatory Bowel Diseases:
doi: 10.1002/ibd.20015
Original Clinical Articles: Clinical Features and Natural History of UC in Korea: Original Article

Clinical features and natural history of ulcerative colitis in Korea

Park, Sang Hyoung MD1†; Kim, Young Min MD1†; Yang, Suk‐Kyun MD1*; Kim, Sai‐Hui MD1; Byeon, Jeong‐Sik MD1; Myung, Seung‐Jae MD1; Cho, Yun Kyung RN1; Yu, Chang‐Sik MD2; Choi, Kwi‐Sook MD1; Chung, Jun‐Won MD1; Kim, Benjamin MD1; Choi, Kee Don MD1; Kim, Jin‐Ho MD1

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Background: The clinical characteristics of ulcerative colitis (UC) in Asian populations have not been well characterized. We therefore investigated the clinical features and natural history of UC in Korea.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 304 Korean patients with UC first diagnosed at the Asan Medical Center between June 1989 and August 2005.

Results: The male‐to‐female ratio of the patients was 0.94:1, and their median age at diagnosis was 40.0 years (range, 12‐72 years). At diagnosis, proctitis was noted in 134 patients (44.1%), left‐sided colitis in 69 patients (22.7%), and extensive colitis in 101 patients (33.2%). Disease activity at diagnosis was mild in 149 patients (49.0%), moderate in 125 patients (41.1%), and severe in 26 patients (8.6%). In addition, 4 asymptomatic patients (1.3%) were detected as a result of a screening colonoscopy. Clinical remission after the first attack was documented in 97.4% of patients. The cumulative relapse rate after 1, 5, and 10 years was 30.2%, 72.0%, and 88.4%, respectively. The cumulative risk of proximal extension in patients with proctitis or left‐sided colitis was 33.0% after 5 years and 44.5% after 10 years. The cumulative probability of colectomy was 2.0% after 1 year, 2.8% after 3 years, and 3.3% after 5 to 15 years. The cumulative survival rate after 1, 5, and 10 years was 100%, 99.4%, and 97.4%, respectively.

Conclusions: The clinical features of Korean UC patients at diagnosis are similar to those of Westerners. However, UC in Koreans may have a milder course than in Westerners, as indicated by the lower rate of colectomy among Koreans.

(Inflamm Bowel Dis 2007)

© Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America, Inc.

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