Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Systematic Review
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Systematic review: hepatitis-associated aplastic anaemia--a syndrome associated with abnormal immunological function.

BACKGROUND: Hepatitis-associated aplastic anaemia is a syndrome in which marrow failure follows the development of hepatitis.

AIM: To review systematically the aetiology, immunopathogenesis, clinical presentation, diagnosis and treatment of hepatitis-associated aplastic anaemia.

METHODS: Literature searches were undertaken on the MEDLINE electronic database up to December 2008. Twenty-four relevant studies were identified. The clinical and laboratory characteristics of the patients were analysed and reviewed.

RESULTS: Hepatitis-associated aplastic anemia is a variant of acquired aplastic anemia in which an episode of hepatitis precedes the onset of aplastic anemia. The hepatitis may be acute and severe, even fulminant; it may be self-limiting or chronic. The pathology is often not attributable to a recognized cause of viral hepatitis. The syndrome occurs in 28 percent of young adults after liver transplantation for non-A, non-B, non-C hepatitis. Several features of the syndrome suggest that the marrow aplasia is mediated by immunological mechanisms, possibly mediated by gamma interferon or the cytokine cascade. Survival of patients treated with hematopoietic cell transplantation has been 82%, and the response rate to immunosuppressive therapy 70%.

CONCLUSIONS: Hepatitis-associated bone marrow aplasia is mediated by immunological mechanisms. Treatment options include hematopoietic cell transplantation and immunosuppressive therapy.

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