The subsequent course of ulcerative colitis in 25 children admitted to hospital during the period 1931 to 1971 is reviewed.
The period of observation averaged 24 years, ranging from 1 to 41 years. 19 patients showed extracolonic manifestations. 4 patients had a single attack of colitis, and in 19 the disease was of the chronic intermittent type. There was one case each of the acute fulminating and chronic continuous types.
Three of 8 patients who had colectomy died postoperatively. One further patient died later of carcinoma of the rectal stump.
At follow-up 5 patients (20%) had died and the remaining 20 (80%) were in remission.
Although the case for surgery in the treatment of acute fulminating or resistant ulcerative colitis may be clear, that for prophylactic panproctocolectomy while the disease is in remission requires further study.
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