P532 Delay of maintenance infliximab increases the risk of relapse in Crohn’s disease during the COVID-19 pandemic

Guo, H.(1);Tang, J.(1);Huang, Z.(1);Li, B.(1);Yang, Q.(1);Chao, K.(1);Gao, X.(1);

(1)the Sixth Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Gastroenterology, Guangzhou, China


Scheduled maintenance infliximab (IFX) therapies were frequently delayed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The unusual situation allowed us to study the influence of decreased treatment adherence on Crohn’s disease (CD). This retrospective study aimed to evaluate the effect of IFX delay on relapse in Crohn’s disease (CD) patients.     


 166 CD patients with maintenance IFX between January 25, 2020, and April 25, 2020, were retrospectively enrolled. Demographic and clinical characteristics were recorded. Relapse was defined as clinical disease relapse or biochemical disease relapse (C-reactive protein (CRP) level ≥5 mg/L without other, non-IBD related explanation). Associations between relapse and IFX delay were analyzed.


A retrospective cohort study was conducted, including 166 CD patients receiving maintenance IFX infusion during the COVID-19 pandemic. Of all, 135 (81.3%) had delayed their IFX infusion. Only 31 (18.7%) followed the schedule infusion during the COVID-19 pandemic. The median time of the IFX delay was 18.6±17.1 days. The relapse rate in the IFX-delay group was significantly higher than the group without delay (25.9% versus 5.5%, P<0.02). During a median IFX delay interval of 46 days (95% CI 20.9-71.1), the ratio of relapse increased with the increase of IFX delay intervals. Delay interval had a cumulative effect on disease recurrence. We proposed interval prolongation resulted in a
significant IFX trough concentration reduction.


Our study provided real-world evidence of influence on relapse of IFX delay in CD patients undergone maintenance therapy. It might help the IBD specialists arrange reasonable IFX treatment intervals for patients.