BACKGROUND--An increasing number of patients with severe or refractory ulcerative colitis involving only the rectum and sigmoid colon are being offered restorative proctocolectomy with ileal reservoir but very few data are available concerning the outcome for these patients. AIM--This study was designed to compare the outcome of ileal pouch procedures for distal ulcerative colitis with procedures performed for more extensive disease. PATIENTS--A consecutive series of 177 patients undergoing restorative proctocolectomy for ulcerative colitis between January 1984 and December 1994. METHODS--Data were collected prospectively in a dedicated ileal pouch database and included demographic details, indication for surgery, surgical procedures performed, early (< 30 days) and late morbidity, functional outcome, and histopathology. RESULTS--There was no mortality in the series. The incidence and range of early morbidity (< 30 days) and the functional outcome (daytime stool frequency, nocturnal frequency, and the incidence of incontinence) were similar for all groups. Log rank analysis of Kaplan-Meier estimates showed no significant difference between groups in the likelihood of developing pouchitis (p > 0.2). CONCLUSIONS--Patients undergoing restorative proctocolectomy for distal colitis experience a similar outcome to patients with more extensive disease. These data refute the hypothesis that pouchitis is more common in patients with total colitis.
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