Two patients with well documented systemic lupus erythematosus developed a syndrome resembling thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. Both had severe thrombocytopenia, microangiopathic hemolytic anemia, seizures, and renal dysfunction. Prothrombin time, partial thromboplastin time, thrombin time, and fibrinogen levels were normal; fibrin degradation products were minimally elevated. Histologic evaluation of renal biopsies in both patients confirmed the impression of intravascular thrombosis. Therapy with corticosteroids, other immunosuppressive drugs and splenectomy (in one case) proved unsuccessful. The infusion of fresh frozen plasma, with or without plasmapheresis, reversed the syndrome. This report indicates that patients with systemic lupus may develop a thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura like syndrome which responds to fresh plasma infusion.
- Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura
- plasma infusion
- systemic lupus erythematosus
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