Fifty-Two-Week Results of Clinical and Imaging Assessments of a Patient with Rheumatoid Arthritis Complicated by Systemic Sclerosis with Interstitial Pneumonia and Type 1 Diabetes despite Multiple Disease-Modifying Antirheumatic Drug Therapy That Was Successfully Treated with Baricitinib: A Novel Case ReportRead the full article
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Ankylosing Spondyloarthritis Resulting Severe Aortic Insufficiency and Aortitis: Exacerbation of Ankylosing Spondyloarthritis and Stenosis of the Main Left Coronary Artery after Mechanical Aortic Valve Implantation with Cardiopulmonary Bypass
Ankylosing spondyloarthritis (AS) is a chronic inflammatory rheumatic disease, strongly related to human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-B27. Cardiac involvement in AS manifests in 2 to 10% of patients as aortic insufficiency, aortitis, mitral valve fibrosis, or disturbance in the conduction of the heart. In this article, we present a case of a 49-year-old male patient with AS, who was referred to our medical institution for elective aortic valve surgery because of severe aortic regurgitation. The histological findings revealed fibrosing endocarditis of aortic valve and nonspecific aortitis of aortic root. Late postoperatively, we observed exacerbation of AS and narrowing of the main left coronary artery (LAD). Our case highlights the importance of proper treatment of AS before and after cardiac surgery. Furthermore, in this case, we suspect association between cardiopulmonary bypass, activity of AS, and coronary artery disease.
Microscopic Polyangiitis with Pulmonary Fibrosis: An Often-Recognized Manifestation of the Disease
Background. Microscopic polyangiitis (MPA) can manifest with atypical features such as pulmonary fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which are atypical and unusual features of small vessel vasculitis. Case Presentation. This paper presents two patients with microscopic polyangiitis and respiratory symptoms attributable to atypical pulmonary manifestations. Pulmonary fibrosis was present in both cases, with COPD also present in one patient. Management involved methylprednisone, prednisone, and cyclophosphamide. The second patient also received azathioprine. Both patients responded well to immunosuppressive treatment; however, pulmonary fibrosis and COPD were refractory to immunosuppression. Conclusion. Pulmonary manifestations including pulmonary fibrosis, emphysema, and bronchiectasis are observed in MPA. Evaluation of MPA in unexplained cases should be performed to avoid delays in diagnosis and management. Patients who present with MPA with pulmonary manifestations may respond to treatment, but their pulmonary features demonstrate a refractory nature to such management.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) with Acute Nephritis, Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic Antibody- (ANCA-) Associated Vasculitis, and Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (TTP): A Rare Case Report with Literature Review
Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP) is a potentially fatal disorder that requires urgent identification and treatment. The association of TTP with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and vasculitis has been reported, however, never simultaneously. A 33-year-old woman with a history of SLE presented with acute abdominal pain, fever, arthralgias, and skin rash. She had acute severe hypertension, diffuse abdominal tenderness, and petechial rash. Diagnostic work-up revealed active urine sediment with proteinuria and hematuria and elevated creatinine, anemia, and thrombocytopenia. She was diagnosed with acute lupus nephritis and early microangiopathic hemolytic anemia in the setting of hypertensive urgency and started on intravenous methylprednisolone 500 mg once a day. Within 48 hours, she developed shock with multiorgan dysfunction and succumbed to her illness. Laboratory tests later showed ADAMTS13 activity less than 10% consistent with TTP and p-antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA) positivity. Autopsy revealed small-vessel vasculitis of the visceral organs. Kidney biopsy demonstrated diffuse proliferative glomerulonephritis. This case illustrates the occurrence of SLE nephritis, p-ANCA vasculitis, and severe TTP with rapidly fatal course, and the importance of having a low threshold for initiating plasma exchange therapy. Here, we discuss the case and provide a literature review on cases of TTP with SLE and vasculitis.
A Case of Diffuse Alveolar Hemorrhage Associated with High-Titer of MPO-ANCA Demonstrating Cytoplasmic Staining Pattern
Diffuse alveolar hemorrhage (DAH) is a life-threatening complication of ANCA-associated vasculitis (AAV) that requires urgent recognition and treatment. A presumptive diagnosis is often rendered without histopathology if concordant positivity of ANCA by indirect immunofluorescence (IIF) and ELISA assays, i.e., P-ANCA+/myeloperoxidase (MPO) Ab+ or C-ANCA+/proteinase-3 (PR3) Ab+, is documented in the context of pulmonary-renal syndrome or rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis. In this respect, the discordance between IIF and ELISA assays poses a diagnostic challenge in the absence of convincing histopathology and involves the risks of delaying the implementation of timely immunosuppressive therapy. Here, we report a 74-year-old woman who developed DAH and was found to have a high titer of MPO-ANCA exhibiting cytoplasmic staining on IIF, i.e., MPO-C-ANCA. The literature suggests that the availability of distinct epitopes on the MPO molecule dictates the perinuclear versus cytoplasmic staining pattern, which potentially explains the discordance between ELISA and IIF assays. Her DAH was controlled in association with seven sessions of plasmapheresis, methylprednisolone 1 gram daily for 3 days followed by 1 mg/kg/day, and rituximab. This case exemplifies the importance of consideration of pretest probability of suspected diagnosis that would realize a plausible interpretation of seemingly inconsistent serological profile and its effective incorporation into the diagnostic reasoning.
Chronic Inflammatory Arthropathy Preceding Acute Systemic Manifestations of Sarcoidosis: A Possible Overlap of Idiopathic Juvenile Arthritis and Sarcoidosis
Sarcoidosis is a multisystem disease with unknown etiology, marked by T lymphocytes and macrophages agglomeration, which leads to the formation of noncaseating granulomas in the affected tissues. We describe a case of a 40-year-old black patient referred to our service for evaluation of nephrolithiasis and persistent elevation of plasma creatinine. He reported important weight loss, fever episodes, and abdominal and low back intermittent pain in the past 6 months. The investigation revealed elevated serum calcium level, hepatosplenomegaly, retroperitoneal lymphadenopathy, anemia, thrombocytopenia, and nephrolithiasis. The initial diagnostic hypothesis was lymphoproliferative disease, but the laparoscopic propaedeutic showed multiple white lesions on the liver surface, which biopsy identified as noncaseating granulomas with asteroid corpuscles, suggestive of sarcoidosis. He was treated with corticosteroids with significant improvement in symptoms and in calcium and creatinine levels. Besides, the patient presented a long-term large joints arthropathy, especially on the knees (with bilateral prosthesis), wrists, and ankles, of unknown etiology. We discuss the systemic manifestations of sarcoidosis related to the reported case, as well as the possible overlapping of idiopathic juvenile arthritis with sarcoidosis.
Alveolar Hemorrhage, a Rare and Life-Threatening Complication of Catastrophic Antiphospholipid Syndrome
Alveolar hemorrhage is the rarest pulmonary complication of catastrophic antiphospholipid syndrome and is associated with high mortality risk. This life-threatening complication results from autoimmune damage to the alveolar blood vessels. Given the limited literature addressing the association of these two pathologies, we report a series of three cases with this complication and then compare our findings with 6 cases reported in the literature.