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Despite the increased numbers of older adults with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), there are few studies regarding the safety and effectiveness of IBD treatments in older adults. The aim of this study was to compare the safety and effectiveness of anti-tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α agents and vedolizumab in older adults with IBD. We conducted a retrospective cohort study using an active comparator, new-user design for adults age 65 years and older with IBD initiating anti-TNF-α agents and vedolizumab in the Medicare claims database from 2014 to 2017. The primary safety outcome was infection-related hospitalization (excluding intra-abdominal and perianal abscesses). Co-primary outcomes to estimate effectiveness were IBD-related hospitalization, IBD-related surgery, and new corticosteroid use 60 days or more after biologic initiation. We performed propensity score weighting to control for confounding and estimated adjusted hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals using standardized morbidity ratio-weighted variables. We identified 1152 anti-TNF-α new users and 480 vedolizumab new users. The median age was 71 years in both cohorts and 11% were age 80 years or older. Crohn's disease patients comprised 54% of the anti-TNF-α cohort and 57% of the vedolizumab cohort. There was no significant difference in demographics, health care utilization, or frailty in both cohorts. More than half of both cohorts had a Charlson comorbidity index of 2 or higher. Vedolizumab users had a decreased risk of infection-related hospitalization (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.47; 95% confidence interval, 0.25-0.86). There was no significant difference in the outcomes approximating effectiveness. Older IBD patients treated with vedolizumab had a lower risk of infection-related hospitalization compared with those initiating anti-TNFs. We observed no difference in effectiveness defined by hospitalizations, surgery, or new corticosteroid use. Copyright © 2022 AGA Institute. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Bharati Kochar, Virginia Pate, Michael D Kappelman, Millie D Long, Ashwin N Ananthakrishnan, Andrew T Chan, Robert S Sandler. Vedolizumab Is Associated With a Lower Risk of Serious Infections Than Anti-Tumor Necrosis Factor Agents in Older Adults. Clinical gastroenterology and hepatology : the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association. 2022 Jun;20(6):1299-1305.e5

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PMID: 34481954

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