Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Background:Faecal calprotectin (FCal) levels are used as a surrogate marker for mucosal inflammation, but thresholds for defining endoscopic or histological disease activity in ulcerative colitis (UC) remain unclear. Methods:Using validated indices, prospective measurements of FCal, symptoms (Simple Colitis Clinical Activity Index, SCCAI), endoscopic (Ulcerative Colitis Endoscopic Index of Severity, UCEIS) and histological activity (Nancy index) were made over 6 months in patients enrolled into the TrueColours UC web-based monitoring programme. Repeated measurements correlation was performed between FCal and SCCAI, UCEIS and Nancy indices using definitions for remission and active disease (UCEIS: remission1, active4; Nancy: remission1, active2; Combined criteria: remission UCEIS1 and Nancy1, active UCEIS4 and Nancy2). Receiver operating characteristic curves investigated FCal thresholds after maximising sensitivity for active disease. Results:In 39 patients followed prospectively for 6 months, correlation coefficients between FCal and SCCAI, UCEIS and Nancy indices were 0.271 (95% CI 0.114-0.415), 0.741 (95% CI 0.289-0.922) and 0.876 (95% CI 0.605-0.965) respectively. Median FCal thresholds for remission using endoscopic, histologic, or combined criteria were 71g/g (range 8-624), 91g/g (range 8-858) and 67g/g (range 8-479), respectively. The FCal threshold above which active disease was confirmed was 187g/g for UCEIS (AUC 0.915), 72g/g for Nancy (AUC 0.824) and 187g/g for combined endoscopic and histologic criteria (AUC 0.936). Conclusions:Correlation between FCal and symptoms in UC is weak. In contrast, the correlation between FCal and endoscopic or histological activity is strong. An FCal 72g/g indicates histological inflammation (Nancy 2) and 187g/g indicates endoscopically active disease (UCEIS 4), whether combined with histopathology or not.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Crohn's & colitis

Publication Date



Translational Gastroenterology Unit, John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford.