Many patients may have flare-ups of their disease, or they may stop responding to treatment. In these situations, the clinician may choose to increase the dose administered or recommend more frequent injections. One cause of decreased response to treatment is the appearance of anti-drug antibodies or “immunogenicity.” To monitor for immunogenicity, our reflexive approach first measures the biologic concentration within a patient’s specimen. Then, if necessary, an additional test is performed to assess the presence of antibodies to a specific drug that the patient has been receiving. The information from these tests helps health care providers determine if their patients are experiencing a loss of response to a specific therapy, and if so, clinicians can adjust treatment plans.
Edward Loftus, Jr., M.D., a gastroenterologist at Mayo Clinic, provides an overview of our reflexive approach to optimizing treatment for inflammatory bowel disease.