Objectives Although the data from primary antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) suggests a beneficial effect of rituximab usage, its therapeutic role remains to be defined in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)-associated APS, a complex clinical situation with thrombotic events and lupus activity. Methods A single-center retrospective analysis of rituximab usages in APS was performed in 800 hospitalized SLE patients. Results There were 63 SLE-associated APS cases with 6 on rituximab therapy, all female aged 37.7 ± 9.0 years with 1 catastrophic and 16 thrombotic episodes. Therapeutic indications included warfarin failure despite the adequate target international normalized ratio with an average duration of 17.3 ± 11.2 months between the thrombotic recurrences. After the rituximab therapy, there was no relapse of thrombosis with a mean follow-up period of 39.3 ± 20.9 months, and a decrease in lupus activity (SLEDAI-2K, 9.7 ± 5.5 to 5.3 ± 2.2). Infection complications were observed, including episodes of bronchitis and urinary tract infection. Conclusions In this single-center study with largest case numbers and a long-term follow-up period, there were no recurrent thrombotic events after the rituximab therapy, implicating further consideration of large-scale trials enrolling more ethnic groups to evaluate its therapeutic role in SLE-associated APS patients.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine