COVID-19: Implications on Inflammatory Bowel Disease

There is increasing evidence that GI symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, may be among the hallmarks of COVID-19. James F. Marion, MD, interviews Ryan Ungaro, MD, about our current understanding of COVID-19 and the implications for patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Dr. Ungaro, an international leader in determining the impact of COVID-19 on IBD, explains that the receptor ACE-2 is the entry point for COVID-19, and is not only present in the lungs and nasal passages, but also in the gastrointestinal tract. He advises that IBD patients should follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for the general population, but heed the social distancing guidelines rigorously. He recommends that IBD patients on autoimmune suppressors should continue taking their medications—with the exception of oral steroids. Dr. Ungaro summarizes some of the current international research initiatives regarding COVID-19 and IBD, but also provides guidelines for patients concerning their ongoing care. Drs. Marion and Ungaro are affiliated with the Susan and Leonard Feinstein Inflammatory Bowel Disease Clinical Center at Mount Sinai.

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James Marion, MD.

James Marion, MD

Professor, Medicine (Gastroenterology)
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

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Ryan Ungaro, MD.

Ryan Ungaro, MD

Assistant Professor, Medicine (Gastroenterology)
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

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