Katie Falloon, MD: Studying IBD-Associated Peripheral Arthritis

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Falloon said IBD-associated peripheral arthritis is common, but not well understood.

There is not much currently known about treating patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)-associated peripheral arthritis.

While the disease has not been explored much, neither have potential treatments that could double and treat the arthritis and IBD.

In an interview with HCPLive® during the Crohn’s and Colitis Congress 2023 in Denver, Katie Falloon, an IBD Fellow with the Cleveland Clinic, said the initial research is an attempt to look at which agents might be effective in treating this disease.

Falloon is part of a team with grant funding from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation through the Clinical Research Alliance Network aimed at studying IBD-associated peripheral arthritis.

More than 50% of patients with IBD also have an extraintestinal manifestation, with peripheral arthritis being the most common one. However, Falloon said it is 1 of the least understood.

“So the goal of this project is to prospectively follow patients over the course of 1 year to determine the overall presentation of BD-associated peripheral arthritis, its response to various therapies, and then risk factors for progression and recurrence,” she said.

There is often some interplay between gastroenterology and rheumatology, with many of the same treatments being used to treat IBD and to treat rheumatological diseases like rheumatoid arthritis.

“That’s really what we are trying to tease out with this study and there hasn’t been a ton of work into which agent works best for IBD-associated peripheral arthritis,” she said.

Falloon said there is currently 2 schools of thought when it comes to treatments.

On one hand, the arthritis could be related to active IBD, so treating the inflammation in the gut will help with the arthritis. The other thought is that the arthritis runs independently of the IBD and a second agent might be needed.