BACKGROUND Cyclosporin (CsA) and infliximab (IFX) have proven efficacy in avoiding colectomy in patients with steroid-refractory ulcerative colitis (UC). AIM To assess the clinical outcome of patients treated with IFX after CsA failure for acute steroid-refractory flares of UC. METHODS Medical records of patients with a steroid-refractory UC flare who did not respond to CsA or relapsed soon after hospital discharge, and who followed rescue therapy with IFX, were reviewed retrospectively. RESULTS Sixteen patients were included, 69% with extensive UC. Thirteen patients had moderate-to-severe disease activity at the time IFX was started. Median time between CsA discontinuation and the first IFX infusion was 19 days. Thirteen patients completed an induction regimen, and 6 of them followed scheduled maintenance treatment with IFX. After a median time of follow-up from the first IFX infusion of 195 days, 6 patients (37.5%) required colectomy. Median time for colectomy was 47 days. There were no deaths or malignancies, and only one septic complication was recorded. CONCLUSIONS IFX rescue therapy might avoid short-term colectomy in a proportion of steroid-refractory UC patients who do not respond to CsA, but systematic use of sequential rescue therapy is not recommended until more data about its safety profile is available.