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Review: one tenth of patients with Crohn’s disease have prolonged remission
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 QUESTION: In patients with Crohn’s disease, what is the natural history of the disease?

Data sources

Studies were identified by searching Medline, Current Contents (1966 to September 2000), and bibliographies of relevant studies.

Study selection

2 reviewers independently selected fully published English language trials that were population-based studies of patients followed from the time of initial diagnosis; used appropriate and objective criteria for disease; had sufficiently long and complete follow up; and quantified disease activity, medication use, and surgery.

Data extraction

2 reviewers independently and blindly extracted data on disease severity or activity, use of medication, and surgical resection rates. Disagreements were resolved by consensus.

Main results

3 studies of 1 population-based cohort (225 people followed from 1940–93) met the selection criteria for natural history studies. 1 study showed that a representative patient spent 24% of …

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