Asymptomatic inflammatory bowel disease presenting with mucocutaneous findings

Sheila S. Galbraith*, Beth A. Drolet, Subra Kugathasan, Amy S. Paller, Nancy B. Esterly

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Although inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) typically presents with gastrointestinal complaints, mucocutaneous lesions are commonly associated and can precede gastrointestinal symptoms, thereby alerting the clinician to the diagnosis of IBD before the onset of gastrointestinal symptoms. Nine children are reported who had no gastrointestinal symptoms suggestive of IBD but presented with mucocutaneous findings of IBD and were subsequently diagnosed with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis based on characteristic features on gastrointestinal endoscopy and/or biopsies. The majority of the patients had oral and perianal lesions. We believe that IBD is a common etiology for persistent oral lesions in the pediatric population. In addition to a good history, children with unexplained oral mucous membrane lesions should have an examination of the rectal and genital mucosa as well as tests for complete blood count, iron levels, sedimentation rate, albumin, and occult blood in the stool with endoscopy and biopsies to rule out IBD if indicated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e439-e444
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2005


  • Crohn's disease
  • Cutaneous
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Oral
  • Pediatrics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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