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A Personalized Diagnostic and Treatment Approach for Macrophage Activation Syndrome and Secondary Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis in Adults

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Abstract

Objective

We assessed the clinical features and outcomes based on therapeutic options adopted during hospital stay for adult patients with macrophage activation syndrome and secondary hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (MAS/sHLH).

Methods

We conducted a retrospective chart review of all adult patients (age ≥ 18 years) diagnosed with MAS/sHLH at our center between 2010 and 2015. Inclusion criteria for patients were diagnosis of MAS/sHLH during admission and patients meeting at least 5 out of 8 of Henter’s criteria or at least 4 out of 6 of the criteria that were tested.

Results

Nineteen adult patients with MAS/sHLH met the inclusion criteria from January 2010 to October 2015 (median age 48 years; female 68.4%). Treatment had been personalized, depending on the clinical presentation and course of disease. Majority of the patients received anakinra, cyclosporine, intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIG), and steroids. Fourteen (74%) patients survived, with clinical improvement by the time of discharge. After excluding the three patients with underlying leukemia/lymphoma who opted for palliative care and subsequently died, the survival rate was 88%.

Conclusion

A modified diagnostic and treatment protocol for adult patients with MAS/sHLH that incorporated graded introduction of medications based on clinical presentation and cytokine profile resulted in the best adult survival rate reported in literature.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge Timothy Ginader for his technical assistance in the production of figures 1 and 2.

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Correspondence to Bharat Kumar.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Kumar, B., Aleem, S., Saleh, H. et al. A Personalized Diagnostic and Treatment Approach for Macrophage Activation Syndrome and Secondary Hemophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis in Adults. J Clin Immunol 37, 638–643 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10875-017-0439-x

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10875-017-0439-x

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