The diagnosis of indeterminate inflammatory bowel disease (indeterminate IBD) has been controversial for many years. The typical patient presents with a colitis that has features of an idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease.


Reasons why people make the diagnosis of indeterminate IBD:

(1) an uncommon or confusing presentation of a common IBD

(2) an IBD early in its course (not yet fully expressed)

(3) limited information available

(4) masking by treatment or by another form of colitis


Requirements for making the diagnosis of an inflammatory bowel disease:

(1) extensive histologic examination of the colon (the Montreal criteria requires complete pathologic examination of a colectomy specimen)

(2) complete clinical information collected over a period of time

(3) availability of serological and genetic information

(4) exclusion of other forms of colitis


Data Availability


complete data available and allows further classification of the IBD

Crohn's Disease or Ulcerative Colitis

complete data available but does not allow further classification of the IBD

inflammatory bowel disease, indeterminate type

data incomplete

inflammatory bowel disease, type unclassified (IBDU)


Every attempt should be made to complete collecting the required information for all unclassified cases.


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