Lethal outcome of catastrophic antiphospholipid syndrome despite intensive triple therapy

Carlos Anjo, Philip Fortuna, Luís Reis, Luís Bento


Catastrophic antiphospholipid syndrome (CAPS), an infrequent autoimmune disease, manifests as a widespread thrombotic disease with multiorgan failure with a 37% mortality rate. We report 39-year-old Caucasian women, medical history of Systemic Lupus Erythematous (SLE) complicated with APS and proliferative glomerulonephritis under dialysis. Patient was admitted at the ICU with septic shock with thoracotomy dehiscence origin. During the ICU stay, extensive lower limbs ulcers with polymorphonuclear infiltrate and steatonecrosis areas in adipose and muscular tissue. Lab studies: anti-β2-glycoprotein-I
antibody was detected. As probable CAPS diagnosis was made, triple therapy with methylprednisolone, immunoglobulin and anticoagulation immediately was started. Serious vasoplegic shock occurs with failure in vasopressor support increment and the patient died. The authors report an APS with rapid progression to catastrophic stage, rare complication that occurs only in 1% of catastrophic APS. In CAPS treatment, a statistical association between triple therapy and the decrease of mortality rate of patients with CAPS was observed, when compared with other combinations or with none of the treatments included in the triple therapy. Although the case had a lethal outcome, the authors emphasize the use of triple therapy in CAPS and the challenge of treating patients with CAPS and infection where the balance between the need for anticoagulation, aggressive immunosuppression and infection control is difficult to manage.

Full Text:


DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/crim.v6n1p13


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Case Reports in Internal Medicine

ISSN 2332-7243(Print)  ISSN 2332-7251(Online)

Copyright © Sciedu Press

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the ‘sciedupress.com’ domains to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', please check your 'spam' or 'junk' folder.