A retrospective review of antiphospholipid syndrome from a South Asian country
Muhammad Zain Mushtaq, Syed Ahsan Ali, Zaibunnisa Sattar, Saad Bin Zafar Mahmood, Tazein Amber, Mehmood Riaz
Department of Medicine, Faculty Office Building the Aga Khan University Hospital Karachi, Pakistan
Keywords: Antiphospholipid antibodies, antiphospholipid syndrome, Pakistan, pregnancy outcome
Objectives: This study aims to investigate clinical presentations, antiphospholipid antibody patterns and their levels, therapeutic regimens, and outcomes in patients with antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) admitted to a tertiary care hospital of a South Asian country.
Patients and methods: Between January 2009 and December 2019, a total of 216 patients with APS (8 males, 208 females; median age: 35.7±6.9 years; range, 20 to 76 years) who either fulfilled the modified Sydney criteria or those who satisfied only clinical criteria along with positive antiphospholipid antibody on at least one occasion (probable APS) were retrospectively analyzed.
Results: The majority of the patients (n=183, 84.7%) had obstetric complications, followed by venous thrombosis in 23 (10.8%) patients. Recurrent early abortions in 126 (58.6%) and deep venous thrombosis in 16 (7.4%) patients were the most prevalent obstetrical and venous events, respectively, whereas limb gangrene in seven (3.3%) and ischemic stroke in seven (3.3%) were the most common arterial events. A total of 190 (88%) patients had primary APS, while 26 (12%) had secondary APS. Systemic lupus erythematosus was the frequent association with secondary APS found in 19 (73%) patients. Immunoglobulin M (IgM) anticardiolipin antibody was present in 173 (65.0%) patients, being the most commonly reported antibody. Probable catastrophic APS was found in four (1.9%) patients. Majority of the patients (n=190, 87.9%) were treated with a combination of acetylsalicylic acid and low-molecular-weight heparin. Single mortality was observed in our study population due to complications related to catastrophic APS.
Conclusion: Antiphospholipid syndrome has a wide range of thrombotic and obstetrical manifestations with important variations in different regions of the world. There is a significant morbidity and mortality related to APS, despite treatment with anticoagulation and; therefore, describing prognostic markers and optimal therapeutic interventions is pivotal to prevent complications.