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Case report
Azathioprine-associated myelodysplastic syndrome in two patients with ulcerative colitis


Azathioprine is a commonly used immunosuppressive agent in post-transplantation regimens and autoimmune diseases. An increased risk of lymphoma with thiopurine therapy in patients with inflammatory bowel disease has been described previously; however, there are few reported cases of azathioprine therapy-related myelodysplastic syndrome and acute myeloid leukaemia. We report two patients with ulcerative colitis who subsequently developed azathioprine-related myelodysplastic syndrome. It is imperative that gastroenterologists remain vigilant for this rare complication as this subset of patients has a particularly poor prognosis. These cases are also important in considering the risk of open-ended thiopurine therapy.

  • Azathioprine
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • IBD
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease

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