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Nephrol Nurs J. 2010 Jul-Aug;37(4):399-402.

Postpartum plasma exchange in a woman with suspected thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP) vs. hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, and low platelet syndrome (HELLP): a case study.

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1
Acute Care Renal/Apheresis Unit, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, VA, USA. llm3m@hscmail.mcc.virginia.edu

Abstract

The occurrence of a hypercoagulable state and decreasing concentration of ADAMTS 13 in late pregnancy and during the postpartum period increases the risk for a woman to develop life-threatening thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP). This is also the time of great risk for the more common obstetric complications of preeclampsia; eclampsia; and hemolysis, elevated liver functions tests, low platelets (HELLP) syndrome. These conditions are associated with high maternal and perinatal mortality. Differential diagnosis may be difficult due to the overlapping of clinical and laboratory findings, including thrombocytopenia, microangiopathic hemolytic anemia, neurologic symptoms, and renal insufficiency, making it difficult or impossible to distinguish them from TTP. Management of microangiopathic disorders encountered during pregnancy differ; therefore, an accurate diagnosis is required. Outcomes of TTP without plasma exchange therapy (TPE) are almost uniformly fatal. Early recognition and management of symptoms with prompt and aggressive TPE is essential when TTP is suspected.

PMID:
20830946
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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