Ohio GI is an acknowledged local, regional, and national leader in treatment of patients with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). Annually we see hundreds of patients with Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, and Microscopic/Lymphocytic/Collagenous Colitis. The number of patients seen and the broad geographic area they come from highlights our extensive experience and why many patients are seen in consultation by us for second opinion consultation. For decades, we have been actively involved in IBD clinical research, leading to publication of innumerable journal articles and participation in many national conferences. Our patients with IBD may chose to participate in clinical trials, availing them of treatments not otherwise available. In Cincinnati, we helped found the local chapter of the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) and have remained very active in its organization, research, fund raising, and educational activities.
We strive to provide IBD patients the most effective and safe therapies available (either by prescription, over-the-counter, dietary, or as part of clinical research trials). We have had great success in reducing the use of steroids which have many short and long-term side effects. We had a full-time IBD nursing staff who are responsible for administering and monitoring biologic medications such as Remicade (infliximab). We utilize additional tools such as disease activity indices to follow many patients to track their progress and provide objective information on each patient’s status. We have developed IBD specific flow sheets to follow and track many aspects of an individual patient’s treatment.
Crohn’s disease is a lifelong and serious condition that has significant medical, economic and social impact. The use of expensive biologic therapies thus needs to be carefully evaluated in terms of providing substantial benefits for our patients. In addition to our clinical research work in developing new medical therapies, we also delve into areas such as the effectiveness of currently available therapies we recommend. For example, we performed a study to examine and document the response of patients with Crohn’s disease to biologic therapy with Remicade (Infliximab). A previously standardized inflammatory bowel disease questionnaire (IBDQ) was used as the tool to measure the patient’s clinical status. Patients entering this study were patients with moderate to severe Crohn’s disease, most of whom who had active disease in spite of treatment with other available modalities typically steroids and immunomodulatory therapies such as azathioprine or 6-mercaptopurine. After treatment with Remicade, the IBDQ score improved in 72% of our patients, was unchanged in 8% and worsened in 20%. This study did document improvement in a very significant percentage of our patients undergoing biologic treatment.