Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome

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Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome :

Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome


Definition Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome (APS) is an autoantibody-mediated acquired thrombophilia characterized by recurrent arterial or venous thrombosis and/or pregnancy morbidity in the presence of autoantibodies against phospholipid (PL)-binding plasma proteins, mainly a plasma apolipoprotein known as 2 glycoprotein I (2GPI) and prothrombin . Another group of antibodies termed lupus anticoagulant (LA) prolong clotting times in vitro; this prolongation is not corrected by adding normal plasma to the detection system. APS may occur alone (primary), or in association with any other autoimmune disease (secondary).


Epidemiology Anti-PL ( aPL )-binding plasma protein antibodies occur in 1–5% of general population. Their prevalence increases with age; however, it is questionable whether they induce thrombotic events in elderly individuals. One-third of patients with systemic lupus erythematosus ( SLE) possess these antibodies while their prevalence in other autoimmune connective tissue disorders such as systemic sclerosis (scleroderma), Sjögren's syndrome, dermatomyositis , rheumatoid arthritis, and early undifferentiated connective tissue disease, ranges from 6% to 15%. One-third of aPL positive individuals experience thrombotic events or pregnancy morbidity.

Clinical Features of Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome:

Clinical Features of Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome Deep vein thrombosis Stroke Migraine Arthralgia Preeclampsia Early fetal loss (<10 weeks) Thrombocytopenia

Clinical criteria :

Clinical criteria vascular thrombosis defined as one or more clinical episodes of arterial, venous, or small vessel thrombosis in any tissue or organ. Pregnancy morbidity, defined as (a) one or more unexplained deaths of a morphologically normal fetus at or beyond the tenth week of gestation, or (b) one or more premature births of a morphologically normal neonate before the thirty-fourth week of gestation because of eclampsia , severe preeclampsia, or placental insufficiency; or (c) three or more unexplained consecutive spontaneous abortions before the 10th week of gestation.

Laboratory criteria :

Laboratory criteria LA Anticardiolipin ( aCL ) Anti-2GPI antibodies, at intermediate or high titers on two occasions, 12 weeks apart.


Treatment APS patients should be placed on warfarin for life aiming to achieve an international normalized ratio (INR) ranging from 2.5 to 3.5, alone or in combination with 80 mg of aspirin daily. Pregnancy morbidity is prevented by a combination of heparin with aspirin 80 mg daily. Intravenous immunoglobulin ( IVIg ) 400 mg/kg qd for 5 days may also prevent abortions, while glucocorticoids are ineffective. Evidence-based treatment of patients with aPL in the absence of any clinical event is not available; however, aspirin 80 mg daily protects patients with SLE positive for aPL antibodies from developing thrombotic events.

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