• Antiphospholipid antibody;
  • immunoadsorption plasmapheresis;
  • pregnancy;
  • SLE

PROBLEM: Our purpose was to study the effect of maternal immunoadsorption plasmapheresis (IA) on the outcome of pregnancies complicated by systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) with positive antiphospholipid antibodies, which were known to have a strong correlation with abortion or stillbirth.

METHOD OF STUDY: Eight pregnancies in 7 patients with SLE were treated according to our protocol. They were all positive for the lupus anticoagulant. The treatments provided in these cases were as follows: an oral low-dose steroid; oral low-dose aspirin; and IA. The outcomes of the pregnancies were then studied.

RESULTS: Of eight pregnancies, seven resulted in preterm deliveries, and cesarean sections were performed at 26–36 weeks of gestation. In one case, intrauterine fetal death occurred at 24 weeks of gestation. The other seven pregnancies resulted in live births (survival rate of 87.5%).

CONCLUSION: IA improves the outcome of pregnancy complicated by SLE with positive antiphospholipid antibodies, without increasing steroid dosage.