Incidence of allergic reactions with fresh frozen plasma or cryo-supernatant plasma in the treatment of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura



Plasma replacement for thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP) is accomplished with various plasma products. This study sought to determine the incidence of allergic reactions with FFP or CPP as replacement in therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE). Forty-one TTP patients were identified retrospectively who received TPE replacement with either FFP (n=21) or CPP (n=20). Anti-histamine was administered prophylactically following the initial occurrence of an allergic reaction (urticaria, respiratory distress, or anaphylaxis with hypotension). Fifty-one allergic reactions occurred in 65.8% of patients. Urticaria comprised 49 of 51 (96%) of reactions and respiratory distress the remaining 4%. No anaphylaxis occurred. Nineteen urticarial reactions occurred in 50% of CPP recipients compared to 71% of FFP recipients (P=0.28). Anti-histamine breakthrough occurred in 36.3% of patients who experienced a previous allergic reaction with CPP and 37.5% with FFP (P=1.0). The overall risk of allergy per unit of plasma was 1.37% (1.23 % CPP, 1.48% FFP), comparable to estimates in non-TTP recipients. The median number of donor exposures preceding the first allergic reaction was 35 and 32, CPP and FFP, respectively (P=0.63). The mean volume of plasma transfused prior to reaction was 9,883 mL for CPP and 9,348 mL for FFP (P=0.85). Neither product was advantageous in preventing allergic complications. Because of the large volume, the number of donor exposures, and prolonged duration of therapy, allergic reactions to plasma are common (65.8%) in the treatment of TTP. J. Clin. Apheresis. 16:134–138, 2001. © 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.