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IBD and arthropathies: a practical approach to its diagnosis and management
  1. Lianne K P M Brakenhoff1,
  2. Désirée M van der Heijde2,
  3. Daniel W Hommes1
  1. 1Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Rheumatology, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Lianne K P M Brakenhoff, Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 RC Leiden, The Netherlands; k.p.m.brakenhoff{at}


Arthropathies are a major clinical problem in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Often it is difficult to control the articular symptoms with the anti-inflammatory strategies used for IBD. Studies evaluating specific treatments aimed at articular manifestations in patients with IBD are rare. Although there has been considerable interest in the gut–joint axis over the last decade, the pathophysiological mechanisms driving IBD-associated arthropathy are still unknown. Recently, interest in the multidisciplinary approach to patients with IBD and arthropathy has been increasing. New research and clinical projects aimed at understanding the mechanisms of disease may advance the development of effective therapies. In this review, the pathophysiology of IBD-associated arthropathy is discussed, as well as clinical manifestations, the classification and current therapeutic strategies.

  • Inflammatory bowel diseases
  • ulcerative colitis
  • crohn's disease
  • spondyloarthritis
  • arthralgia
  • arthritis
  • IBD

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.