Comparative Effectiveness and Safety of Anti–Tumor Necrosis Factor Agents in Biologic-Naive Patients With Crohn's Disease

Siddharth Singh, Herbert C. Heien, Lindsey R. Sangaralingham, Stephanie R. Schilz, Michael D. Kappelman, Nilay D. Shah, Edward V. Loftus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Background & Aims Inhibitors of tumor necrosis factor (anti-TNF agents) are the most effective therapy for Crohn's disease (CD). We evaluated the real-world comparative effectiveness and safety of different anti-TNF agents (infliximab, adalimumab, and certolizumab pegol) in biologic-naive patients with CD in a retrospective, propensity-matched cohort study using a national administrative claims database (Optum Labs Data Warehouse). Methods We identified 3205 biologic-naive patients with CD (mean age, 41 ± 15 years; 45% male; median follow-up period after anti-TNF therapy, 19 months; 44.5% on infliximab and 38.9% on adalimumab) who received their first prescription for an anti-TNF agent (infliximab, adalimumab, or certolizumab pegol) after a 12-month period without any anti-TNF treatment (baseline), and with a minimum follow-up period of 6 months after their initial anti-TNF prescription, between 2006 and 2014. The primary outcomes were all-cause and CD-related hospitalization, abdominal surgery, corticosteroid use, and serious infections. We performed a propensity-matched, Cox proportional hazards analysis, accounting for baseline demographics, health care use, comorbidities, and use of CD-related medication. Results Compared with adalimumab-treated patients, infliximab-treated patients had a lower risk of CD-related hospitalization (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR], 0.80; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.66–0.98), abdominal surgery (aHR, 0.76; 95% CI, 0.58–0.99), and corticosteroid use (aHR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.75–0.96). Compared with certolizumab pegol–treated patients, infliximab-treated patients had a lower risk of all-cause hospitalization (aHR, 0.70; 95% CI, 0.52–0.95) and CD-related hospitalization (aHR, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.39–0.90). Adalimumab-treated patients had outcomes comparable with those of certolizumab pegol–treated patients. All agents had comparable risk of serious infections. Conclusions In a retrospective analysis of a large cohort of biologic-naive patients with CD, we found infliximab to be superior to adalimumab and certolizumab pegol for patient-relevant outcomes, without increased risk of serious infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1120-1129.e6
JournalClinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Biologics
  • Database Analysis
  • Propensity Matching
  • Real-World Effectiveness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


Dive into the research topics of 'Comparative Effectiveness and Safety of Anti–Tumor Necrosis Factor Agents in Biologic-Naive Patients With Crohn's Disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this