Clinical characteristics, triggering etiologies, and response of plasmapheresis in thrombotic microangiopathy in Taiwan

Ching Hu Chung, I. Jung Tsai, Min Hua Tseng, Hsin Hsu Chou, You Lin Tain, Jeng Daw Tsai, Yuan Yow Chiou, Yee Hsuan Chiou, Ching Yuang Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review


AbstractThrombotic microangiopathy (TMA) syndromes are extraordinarily diverse in clinical presentations and etiologies. However, there are still a limited number of large cohort studies focusing on the underlying causes, outcomes, and response to plasmapheresis.A retrospective study was designed to understand trigger etiologies, organ dysfunctions, clinical outcomes, and efficacy of plasmapheresis in patients with TMA. The whole population of Taiwan was set up into 2 cohorts: 875 patients with TMA in the 2006 cohort (2006-2010) and 1352 patients with TMA in the 2011 cohort (2011-2015). One hundred ninety-five patients in the 2006 cohort and 272 patients in the 2011 cohort were under plasmapheresis treatment.The common underlying etiologies were pregnancy, followed by systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, transplantation and drugs, which were significantly higher than the control group. Stroke, seizure, arterial thrombosis, vascular stenosis, hypertension, myocardial infarction, and pancreatitis were the main clinical signs and extra-renal involvements. In the multivariate regression analysis, stroke, arterial thrombosis, peripheral arterial disease, and uremia were significantly higher compared with the control group. The mortality rate in TMA under plasmapheresis was significantly higher than all TMA cases (39.33% vs 15.39% in the 2006 cohort and 39.27% vs 15.06% in the 2011 cohort).This study indicated the spectrum of underlying causes, extra-renal characteristics, and the response to plasmapheresis of patients with TMA in Taiwan. Of note, the poor clinical outcomes of plasmapheresis in patients with TMA might highlight the masked underlying etiology or worse disease condition that should be noticed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E25986
JournalMedicine (United States)
Issue number20
StatePublished - 21 05 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. All rights reserved.


  • atypical hemolytic-uremic syndrome
  • complement dysregulation
  • plasmapheresis
  • thrombotic microangiopathy
  • thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura


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