Original Article

Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 56, Issue 12, pp 3463-3470

Twelve-Month Persistency with Oral 5-Aminosalicylic Acid Therapy for Ulcerative Colitis: Results from a Large Pharmacy Prescriptions Database

  • Sunanda V. KaneAffiliated withDivision of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine Email author 
  • , Michael SumnerAffiliated withShire Pharmaceuticals Inc.
  • , Dory SolomonAffiliated withShire Pharmaceuticals Inc.
  • , Matthew JenkinsAffiliated withShire Pharmaceuticals Inc.

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Patients receiving 5-aminosalicylic acid (5-ASA) require long-term therapy to achieve good outcomes. Persistency (duration of time from initiation to discontinuation of therapy) is therefore an important consideration.


To evaluate persistency in patients receiving various oral 5-ASA formulations.


This retrospective, 12-month, cohort study examined new-starter patients (any age and diagnosis) from a large United States pharmacy database who filled a prescription for oral 5-ASA [Lialda®, Asacol®, Pentasa® 250 or 500 mg, balsalazide (generic and Colazal®), and olsalazine (Dipentum®)] between March and September 2007. Persistency was evaluated monthly on the basis of prescription refill rates.


Prescription and refill records were identified for 44,191 patients receiving oral 5-ASA. After 1 year, 20% of patients receiving Lialda were considered persistent and classified as continuing (refilling within a timeframe of up to twice the duration of the prescription), compared with 9% receiving Asacol, 7 (250 mg) and 10% (500 mg) receiving Pentasa, 10% receiving balsalazide, and 10% receiving Dipentum.


Overall persistency with oral 5-ASA therapy was low. However, patients receiving once-daily Lialda had significantly higher persistency after 1 year of treatment than patients receiving other oral 5-ASA therapies.


5-aminosalicylic acid Mesalazine Mesalamine Persistency Ulcerative colitis Pharmacy database