A Case of Moderate Sprue-Like Enteropathy Associated With Telmisartan

Aurelio Negro, Loredana De Marco, Valentina Cesario, Rosaria Santi, Maria Chiara Boni, Magda Zanelli


Sprue-like enteropathy associated with olmesartan medoxomil use has been recently reported. Its clinical manifestations include diarrhea, weight loss and malabsorption. Duodenal biopsies show villous atrophy (VA) with or without intraepithelial lymphocytosis and inflammation of the lamina propria. Serology for celiac disease (CD) is negative and gluten-free diet does not result in clinical improvement. Symptoms resolve after olmesartan discontinuation. Follow-up biopsies show recovery/improvement of the duodenum. Whether sprue-like enteropathy is a specific adverse reaction to olmesartan or rather a class effect of angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs) remains a controversial issue. We report a case of sprue-like enteropathy associated with telmisartan. A 52-year-old man presented with chronic diarrhea, abdominal discomfort and significant weight loss. In the last 3 years, he had been treated with telmisartan 40 mg/day for hypertension after right adrenalectomy for an aldosterone-producing adenoma. Laboratory investigations showed no significant abnormalities: Hb 13.6 g/dL, serum albumin 3.9 g/dL, total cholesterol 193 mg/dL, serum creatinine 0.99 mg/dL, sodium 143.6 mmol/L, K+ 4.3 mmol/L, calcium 9.3 mg/dL, phosphorus 3.9 mg/dL and 25-OH-D3 27.7 ng/mL. Duodenal histology showed subtotal VA and inflammation of the lamina propria. CD serology was negative. HLA-DQ typing showed absence of the DQ2/DQ8 haplotypes. After telmisartan discontinuation, patients symptoms subsided, and his body weight increased despite persistence of a gluten-containing diet. Follow-up biopsies at 3 showed progressive duodenal recovery. Very few cases of sprue-like enteropathy associated with ARBs other than olmesartan have been reported. Our case of telmisartan-associated enteropathy further suggests that sprue-like disease may be a class effect of ARBs.

J Clin Med Res. 2017;9(12):1022-1025
doi: https://doi.org/10.14740/jocmr3047w


Sprue-like enteropathy; Telmisartan

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