The management of refractory recurrent pericarditis is challenging. Previous clinical reports have noted a beneficial effect of high-dose intravenous human immunoglobulins (IvIgs) in isolated and systemic inflammatory disease-related forms. In this article, we analyzed retrospectively our clinical experience with IvIg therapy in a series of clinical cases of pericarditis refractory to conventional treatment. We retrospectively analyzed 9 patients (1994 to 2010) with refractory recurrent pericarditis, who received high-dose IvIg as a part of their medical treatment. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), steroids, or colchicine treatment was not discontinued during IvIg treatment. No patients had a history of autoimmune or connective tissue diseases. During an average period of 11 months from the first recurrence, patients had experienced a mean of 5 relapses before the first IvIg treatment. In 4 cases, patients showed complete clinical remission with no further relapse after the first IvIg cycle. Two patients experienced a single minor relapse, responsive to short-term nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. In 2 patients, we performed a second cycle of IvIg after a recurrence of pericarditis, with subsequent complete remission. One patient did not respond to 3 cycles of IvIg and subsequently underwent pericardial window and long-term immunosuppressive treatment. No major adverse effect was observed in consequence of IvIg administration in all the cases. In conclusion, although IvIg mode of action is still poorly understood in this setting, this treatment can be considered as an option in patients with recurrent pericarditis refractory to conventional medical treatment and, in our small series, has proved to be effective in 8 of 9 cases.

Usefulness of high-dose intravenous human immunoglobulins treatment for refractory recurrent pericarditis.

Merlo M;Fabris E;SINAGRA, GIANFRANCO
2013

Abstract

The management of refractory recurrent pericarditis is challenging. Previous clinical reports have noted a beneficial effect of high-dose intravenous human immunoglobulins (IvIgs) in isolated and systemic inflammatory disease-related forms. In this article, we analyzed retrospectively our clinical experience with IvIg therapy in a series of clinical cases of pericarditis refractory to conventional treatment. We retrospectively analyzed 9 patients (1994 to 2010) with refractory recurrent pericarditis, who received high-dose IvIg as a part of their medical treatment. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), steroids, or colchicine treatment was not discontinued during IvIg treatment. No patients had a history of autoimmune or connective tissue diseases. During an average period of 11 months from the first recurrence, patients had experienced a mean of 5 relapses before the first IvIg treatment. In 4 cases, patients showed complete clinical remission with no further relapse after the first IvIg cycle. Two patients experienced a single minor relapse, responsive to short-term nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. In 2 patients, we performed a second cycle of IvIg after a recurrence of pericarditis, with subsequent complete remission. One patient did not respond to 3 cycles of IvIg and subsequently underwent pericardial window and long-term immunosuppressive treatment. No major adverse effect was observed in consequence of IvIg administration in all the cases. In conclusion, although IvIg mode of action is still poorly understood in this setting, this treatment can be considered as an option in patients with recurrent pericarditis refractory to conventional medical treatment and, in our small series, has proved to be effective in 8 of 9 cases.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11368/2759763
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