Tested positive for COVID-19

Speak to your gastroenterologist right away if you have tested positive for COVID-19.

Please remain isolated. Refer to Public Health Canada for information on what to do.

Medications that are NOT immunosuppressive should be continued. The following IBD treatments DO NOT suppress your immune system:

  • 5- aminosalicylates (5-ASA's): mesalamine, mesalazine (Asacol®, Mezavant®, Pentasa®, Salofalk®), sulfasalazine (Salazopyrin®)

  • Locally acting steroids: budesonide (Entocort®), budesonide MMX (Cortiment®), steroid enemas

  • Enteral nutrition (formula feeds) or dietary therapies

  • Probiotics

If you are using immunosuppressive medications (including biologics), you should temporarily stop your medications and speak to your doctor immediately. Immunosuppressive and biologic medications include:

  • Steroids: prednisone (Deltasone), methylprednisolone, hydrocortisone (Hydrocort, Cortate). NEVER stop prednisone suddenly - speak to your doctor first.

  • Immunomodulators: azathioprine (Imuran), 6-mercaptopurine (Purinethol), methotrexate

  • Anti-TNF biologics: infliximab (Remicade®, Inflectra®, RenflexisTM), adalimumab (Humira®), golimumab (Simponi®)

  • Anti-IL12/23 biologics: ustekinumab (Stelara®)

  • Anti-leukocyte migration biologics: vedolizumab (Entyvio®)

  • JAK inhibitor small molecules: tofacitinib (Xeljanz®)

We are not yet certain whether it is safe to continue immunosuppressive medications during a COVID-19 infection. In some situations, your doctor may decide to continue treatment instead of stopping it. Speak to your doctor for further advice.

You may resume your immunosuppressive medication (including biologics) two weeks from onset of symptoms, provided that you have recovered from the COVID-19 related symptoms.

Some people with COVID-19 will continue to experience mild symptoms (such as post-viral cough, lack of ability to small/taste) for longer than two weeks. Your doctor may recommend that you resume your immunosuppressive medications. For more information, please visit our COVID-19 and IBD medications page.

If you have very active inflammation due to IBD but are at low risk of complications due to COVID-19, your doctor may recommend restarting your immunosuppressive medications sooner. This depends on your clinical status, and your doctor will balance your risk of complications from IBD with your risk of complications from COVID-19.

If your symptoms last longer than 7-14 days, you should speak to your doctor.

Speak to your doctor about registering you into the SECURE-IBD registry.

  • Canada has among the highest incidence rates of Crohn's and colitis in the world.
  • 1 in 140 Canadians lives with Crohn’s or colitis.
  • Families new to Canada are developing these diseases for the first time.
  • Incidence of Crohn’s in Canadian kids under 10 has doubled since 1995.
  • People are most commonly diagnosed before age 30.