JOURNAL ARTICLE
RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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ADAMTS13 activity in thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura-hemolytic uremic syndrome: relation to presenting features and clinical outcomes in a prospective cohort of 142 patients.

Blood 2003 July 2
Initial management of patients with thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura-hemolytic uremic syndrome (TTP-HUS) is difficult because of lack of specific diagnostic criteria, high mortality without plasma exchange treatment, and risks of plasma exchange. Although severe ADAMTS13 (a disintegrin-like and metalloprotease with thrombospondin type 1 repeats) deficiency may be specific for TTP, the role of ADAMTS13 activity measurements for initial management decisions is unknown. ADAMTS13 was measured before beginning plasma exchange treatment in 142 (88%) of 161 consecutive patients with clinically diagnosed TTP-HUS with assignment to 1 of 4 categories: less than 5% (severe deficiency), 5% to 9%, 10% to 25%, and more than 25%. Eighteen (13%) of 142 patients had severe ADAMTS13 deficiency. Among 6 predefined clinical categories (stem cell transplantation, pregnant/postpartum, drug association, bloody diarrhea, additional/alternative disorder, idiopathic), severe deficiency occurred only among pregnant/postpartum (2 of 10) and idiopathic (16 of 48) patients. The presenting features and clinical outcomes of the 16 patients with idiopathic TTP-HUS who had severe ADAMTS13 deficiency were variable and not distinct from the 32 patients with idiopathic TTPHUS who did not have severe ADAMTS13 deficiency. Many patients in all ADAMTS13 activity categories apparently responded to plasma exchange treatment. Therefore, severe ADAMTS13 deficiency does not detect all patients who may be appropriately diagnosed with TTP-HUS and who may respond to plasma exchange treatment.

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