Background: COVID-19 was initially considered a respiratory disease but the SARS-CoV-2 virus can lead to serious systemic consequences affecting major organs including the digestive system. Summary: This review brings new clinically important information for the gastroenterologist. This includes: the mechanisms of tissue damage seen with the SARS-CoV-2 virus; the consequences of immunosuppression in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and chronic liver disease with the additional risks of decompensation in patients with cirrhosis; the impact of COVID-19 on gastrointestinal emergencies, on gastrointestinal endoscopy, diagnosis and treatments. These highlight the need to understand the clinical pharmacology, toxicology and therapeutic implications of drugs commonly used by gastroenterologists and their links with COVID-19. Key Messages: Any part of the digestive system may be affected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and those with pre-existing disease are at greatest risk of adverse outcomes. The risk for drug-drug interactions is considerable in patients seriously ill with COVID-19 who often require mechanical ventilation and life support. Some repurposed drugs used against SARS-CoV-2 can cause or aggravate some of the COVID-19-related gastrointestinal symptoms and can also induce liver injury. Ongoing clinical studies will hopefully identify effective drugs with a more favourable risk-benefit ratio than many initially tried treatments.

Copyright / Drug Dosage / Disclaimer
Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.