Case Report: Systemic lupus erythematous associated with thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, a diagnostic challenge

Horacio Suárez-Ale, Elizabeth Fabian-Aquino, Virgilio E. Failoc-Rojas, Vicente A. Benites-Zapata, Felipe Ignacio-Cconchoy

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículorevisión exhaustiva


Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP) is an uncommon microangiopathic disease and sometimes is associated with systemic lupus erythematous (SLE). However, this probable causal relationship has not been completely proven. The diagnostic differentiation of both diseases is difficult in the first instance because they share similar characteristics that may overlap. We present a case of a 32-year-old woman with antecedents of epileptic seizures since she was 12 years old. The patient was admitted to the emergency room with a clinical picture of headaches, fever, paleness in the skin and mucosa, confused state, paresthesia, and transient spasticity of the extremities. The laboratory results revealed direct Coombs negative hemolytic anemia, severe thrombocytopenia, significant elevation of lactate dehydrogenase, and presence of schistocytes ++ in the peripheral film. In addition, positive antinuclear antibodies and positive anti-native DNA in titers of 1/320 and 1/160, respectively, were found. Urinalysis showed that serum creatinine was in normal range. Because of limited hospital resources, ADAMTS13 was not evaluated. However, based on clinical, hematological, and biochemical findings, we concluded that it was a case of TTP associated with SLE and indicated treatment with plasmapheresis and methylprednisolone pulses, obtaining a satisfactory response (normalization of biomarker levels, health condition) after the second session of plasmapheresis. Diagnosis of both SLE and TTP is often difficult to achieve; however, adequate correlation of clinical manifestations and laboratory tests, along with the help of partial therapeutic interventions, may lead to good clinical response.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo552
EstadoPublicada - 2022


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