Many diseases can imitate inflammatory bowel disease [IBD] clinically and pathologically. This review outlines the differential diagnosis of IBD and discusses morphological pointers and ancillary techniques that assist with the distinction between IBD and its mimics.
European Crohn's and Colitis Organisation [ECCO] Topical Reviews are the result of an expert consensus. For this review, ECCO announced an open call to its members and formed three working groups [WGs] to study clinical aspects, pathological considerations, and the value of ancillary techniques. All WGs performed a systematic literature search.
Each WG produced a draft text and drew up provisional Current Practice Position [CPP] statements that highlighted the most important conclusions. Discussions and a preliminary voting round took place, with subsequent revision of CPP statements and text and a further meeting to agree on final statements.
Clinicians and pathologists encounter a wide variety of mimics of IBD, including infection, drug-induced disease, vascular disorders, diverticular disease, diversion proctocolitis, radiation damage, and immune disorders. Reliable distinction requires a multidisciplinary approach.