3 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: Crohn’s Disease (CD) is a chronic inflammatory disease that can lead to progressive damage to the gastrointestinal tract and significant disability. Early, “top-down” biologic therapy is recommended in moderate-to-severe CD to induce remission and to prevent hospitalization and complications. However, an estimated 20–30% of patients with CD have a mild disease course and may not garner sufficient benefit from expensive, immunosuppressing agents to justify their risks. Herein, we review characteristics of patients with mild CD, the available options for disease treatment and monitoring, and future directions of research. Recent Findings: For ambulatory outpatients with low-risk, mild, ileal or ileocolonic CD, induction of remission with budesonide is recommended. For colonic CD, sulfasalazine is a reasonable choice, although other aminosalicylates have no role in the treatment of CD. No large, randomized trial has supported the use of antibiotics or antimycobacterials in the treatment of CD. Partial Enteral Nutrition and Crohn’s Disease Exclusion Diets may be appropriate for inducing remission in some adult patients, with trials ongoing. Select patients with mild-to-moderate CD may benefit from maintenance therapy with azathioprines or gut specific biologics, such as vedolizumab. The role of complementary and alternative medicine is not well defined. Summary: The identification, risk stratification, and monitoring of patients with mild CD can be a challenging clinical scenario. Some patients with low risk of disease progression may be appropriate for initial induction of remission with budesonide or sulfasalazine, followed by close clinical monitoring. Future research should focus on pre-clinical biomarkers to stratify disease, novel therapies with minimal systemic immune suppression, and validation of rigorous clinical monitoring algorithms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-51
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Gastroenterology Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023


  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Mild
  • Treatment


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