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January 1961

Withdrawal of Adrenal Steroids and Corticotropin: Clinical Observations in Chronic Ulcerative Colitis

Author Affiliations


Section of Medicine, Mayo Clinic (Dr. Sauer); Fellow in Medicine, Mayo Foundation (Dr. Maks). The Mayo Foundation is a part of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota.

Arch Intern Med. 1961;107(1):88-94. doi:10.1001/archinte.1961.03620010092015

Adrenal steroids are widely used in the management of ulcerative colitis but agreement on their use is not universal. Opinions vary as to the efficacy of these substances in the management of the disease,1-12 their role in the production of complications,11,13-18 and their role in the production of systemic complications unrelated to the disease.19,20 Most authors agree that steroid substances may be beneficial and are indicated in the treatment of some complications of ulcerative colitis, such as iritis, arthritis, and severe erythema nodosum. Short-term use may be beneficial in some acutely ill patients to obtain improved appetite and a feeling of well-being. Opinions vary as to the use of long-term courses of treatment with these substances.

Supportive measures, including adequate rest, diet, use of vitamin supplements, symptomatic medication, use of sedatives and antispasmodics, blood transfusion, and replacement of fluid and electrolyte losses, form the basic program of