IBD patients should take COVID-19 vaccines whenever available, experts say

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Gastroenterologists recommend patients with inflammatory bowel disease seek out the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as they become available, Medscape reported Dec. 11.

Three GIs discussed the vaccine at length during the Advances in Inflammatory Bowel Disease 2020 Annual Meeting, Dec.9-12.

Miguel Regueiro, MD, chair of Cleveland Clinic's GI division; Maria Abreu, MD, director of the Crohn's & Colitis Center at the University of Miami and David Rubin, MD, chief of gastroenterology at UChicago, all recommended IBD patients take the vaccine. Dr. Abreu said, "It's much safer to get a vaccine than it is to take your chances of getting COVID-19."

IBD patients that contract COVID-19 "may have a more severe course than the general population, but not by much," according to Michael Kappelman, MD, of Chapel Hill-based University of North Carolina. Dr. Kappelman oversees the Secure-IBD registry, which logs outcomes from patients with IBD that contract COVID-19. The registry has information from more than 3,300 COVID-19 cases.

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