Refractory coeliac disease (RCD) occurs when patients with confirmed CD have continuous or recurrent malabsorption and enteropathy after at least 12 months on a gluten-free diet. Differentiating between type I and type II RCD is key as the latter is associated with T-cell aberrancy and considered prelymphoma, with high mortality rates. Current treatment regimens for type II RCD include corticosteroids, biologics and chemotherapy, but there are no proven therapies for this serious condition. Our patient is a middle-aged woman who developed postpartum type II RCD. When she failed multiple drug classes, we did a trial of tofacitinib. Our clinical experience with use of a janus kinase inhibitor was successful, with no associated adverse events. This is the first report in the literature of RCD remission in response to tofacitinib. The use of this novel agent shows promise in reversing this potentially fatal condition.
- Small intestine
- Coeliac disease
- Drugs: gastrointestinal system
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Contributors All authors contributed to the the writing and editing of the paper. JKG and GAW providered clinical care for the patient. AK analysed the histology and reviewed the manuscript.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.