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Life-Threatening Bleeding, Pregnancy and Lupus Anticoagulant: Success after Steroid and Anticoagulant Therapy


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Problem:  The clinical manifestations associated with the presence of the lupus anticoagulant (LAC) are usually thrombotic and/or obstetric complications, specially miscarriages and/or repeated fetal deaths. The bleeding episodes in patients with LAC with no other coagulation disorders are exceptional, especially during pregnancy, intra- and postpartum.

Method of study:  Here we present two cases of patients with classification criteria of primary antiphospholipid antibody syndrome, a history of recurrent complicated pregnancies and massive bleeding during abortion and postpartum. We studied anticardiolipin (IgG/IgM), beta2glicoprotein-1 (IgG) and antimitochondrial (type 5) antibodies, LAC, rapid plasma reagin, coagulation test, clotting factors and, placental vascular flow from the second trimester of their last pregnancies.

Results:  LAC was repeatedly detected in both cases. The prothrombin time and clotting factors including factors II and XIII were normal. Intrauterine growth restriction was also observed in both patients. Pre-eclampsia was detected in patient 2. We tried enoxaparin (60–80 mg/day) and prednisone (1 mg/kg/day) therapy and no maternal, hemorrhagic or thrombotic episodes were observed.

Conclusions:  Exceptionally, LAC may be associated with recurrent, life-threatening bleeding, even in patients with no prothrombin deficiency. The close follow-up and early anticoagulant and steroid therapy seems to be able to control thrombotic and hemorrhagic complications during the pregnancy and postpartum.

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