The objective of this study is to evaluate the economic benefits of immunoglobulin replacement therapy achieved subcutaneously (subcutaneous immunoglobulin, SCIG) by the rapid push method compared to intravenous infusion therapy (intravenous immunoglobulin, IVIG) in primary immune deficiency (PID) patients from the healthcare system perspective in the context of the adult SCIG home infusion program based at St Paul's Hospital, Vancouver, Canada.
Materials and methods
SCIG and IVIG options were compared in cost-minimisation and budget impact models (BIMs) over 3 years. Sensitivity analyses were performed for both models to evaluate the impact of varying modality of IVIG treatments and proportion of patients switching from IVIG to SCIG.
The cost-minimisation model estimated that SCIG treatment reduced cost to the healthcare system per patient of $5736 over 3 years, principally because of less use of hospital personnel. This figure varied between $5035 and $8739 depending on modality of IVIG therapy. Assuming 50% of patients receiving IVIG switched to SCIG, the BIM estimated cost savings for the first 3 years at $1·308 million or 37% of the personnel and supply budget. These figures varied between $1·148 million and $2·454 million (36 and 42%) with varying modalities of IVIG therapy. If 75% of patients switched to SCIG, the reduced costs reached $1·962 million or 56% of total budget.
This study demonstrated that from the health system perspective, rapid push home-based SCIG was less costly than hospital-based IVIG for immunoglobulin replacement therapy in adult PID patients in the Canadian context.
budget impact model; cost minimisation; IVIG; primary immune deficiencies; SCIG
For patients who require replacement therapy for primary immunodeficiency, subcutaneous infusions of immunoglobulin G (IgG) may be preferable to intravenous infusions for several reasons. However, at present, there is no preparation marketed for use by this route in North America. In this article, we describe the reasons patients have selected this route of therapy and the range of treatment regimens used. Approximately 20% of our patients have chosen the subcutaneous route, mainly because of adverse effects from intravenous (IV) infusions or difficulties with venous access. Unit dose regimens using whole bottles of currently available 16% intramuscular preparations or sucrose-containing lyophilized preparations intended for IV use but reconstituted to 15% IgG for subcutaneous administration were individually tailored to each patient. In most cases, self-infusions or home infusions were administered once or twice a week, most commonly requiring two subcutaneous sites and 2 to 3 hours per infusion. On average, patients took 0.18 mL of IgG per kilogram of body weight per site per hour. There were no systemic adverse effects. In patients for whom comparative data were available, trough serum IgG levels were higher with subcutaneous therapy than with IV therapy.
Antibody deficiency is the most frequently encountered primary immunodeficiency disease (PIDD) and patients who lack the ability to make functional immunoglobulin require life-long replacement therapy to prevent serious bacterial infections. Human serum immunoglobulin manufactured from pools of donated plasma can be administered intramuscularly, intravenously or subcutaneously. With the advent of well-tolerated preparations of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) in the 1980s, the suboptimal painful intramuscular route of administration is no longer used. However, some patients continued to experience unacceptable adverse reactions to the intravenous preparations, and for others, vascular access remained problematic. Subcutaneously administered immunoglobulin (SCIg) provided an alternative delivery method to patients experiencing difficulties with IVIg. By 2006, immunoglobulin preparations designed exclusively for subcutaneous administration became available. They are therapeutically equivalent to intravenous preparations and offer patients the additional flexibility for the self-administration of their product at home. SCIg as replacement therapy for patients with primary antibody deficiencies is a safe and efficacious method to prevent serious bacterial infections, while maximizing patient satisfaction and improving quality of life.
subcutaneous immunoglobulin; primary immunodeficiency disease; antibody deficiency; X-linked agammaglobulinemia; common variable immune deficiency
Subcutaneous immunoglobulin (SCIG) therapy is an alternative to intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) therapy.
We evaluated the efficacy and safety of the SCIG Vivaglobin® (formerly known as Beriglobin® SC) under real-life conditions in a post-marketing observational study in 82 patients with primary or secondary antibody deficiencies. Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) was evaluated in a subset of 30 patients previously treated with IVIG (including 11 children < 14 years) using the Short Form 36 (SF-36) for patients ≥ 14 years of age (adults) and the Child Health Questionnaire - Parental Form 50 (CHQ-PF50) for children < 14 years of age. Treatment preferences were assessed in adults.
The mean serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) trough level during SCIG treatment (7.5 g/L) was higher than during previous IVIG treatment (6.6 g/L; p < 0.01). The investigators assessed the efficacy of SCIG therapy as "excellent" in 89% of patients. No systemic adverse drug reactions were observed. Improvements by ≥ 5 points were observed in 5 of 8 SF36 subscales and in 6 of 12 CHQ-PF50 subscales. Statistically significant improvements (p ≤ 0.05) were observed for the SF-36 subscales of bodily pain, general health perceptions, and vitality (adults), and for the CHQ-PF50 subscales of general health perceptions, parental impact - time, parental impact - emotional, and family activities (children). Patients preferred SCIG over IVIG therapy (92%) and home therapy over therapy at the clinic/physician (83%).
This study confirms that therapy with Vivaglobin® at home is effective, safe, well tolerated, and improves quality of life in patients with antibody deficiency.
antibody deficiency; subcutaneous immunoglobulin therapy; quality of life; children; adults
Immune globulin subcutaneous 20% is a new high-concentration (200 g/L) solution of highly purified human IgG (≥98%) indicated in the EU and the US for antibody replacement therapy in patients with primary immunodeficiency with antibody deficiency, and in the EU for replacement therapy in humoral immunodeficiency secondary to myeloma or chronic lymphocytic leukaemia.
Immune globulin subcutaneous 20% is formulated with L-proline, which imparts long-term stability at room temperature and a relatively low viscosity.
In two pivotal phase III trials in stably treated patients with primary immunodeficiency, immune globulin subcutaneous 20% at weekly subcutaneous dosages either equivalent to each patient’s previous intravenous or subcutaneous replacement therapy, or providing equivalent systemic exposure to previous intravenous therapy, produced mean serum IgG trough levels equal to or greater than pre-study levels. In each trial, there were no serious bacterial infections during treatment throughout the 28-week or 12-month efficacy periods. The rates of infectious episodes, days missed from work/school, days hospitalized or days with antibiotics were low.
Immune globulin subcutaneous 20% was generally well tolerated. A high proportion of patients experienced local infusion-site reactions, but infusion-related systemic adverse events were relatively infrequent. Most adverse events were of mild or moderate intensity and did not interfere with therapy.
Long term intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) infusion is an
effective treatment for children with immunodeficiencies, but can be
complicated by poor venous access, systemic adverse reactions, and the
need for frequent hospital admission. Rapid subcutaneous immunoglobulin
(SCIG) infusion has been found to be effective in adults with primary
immunodeficiency. Twenty six children were treated with SCIG for a
median period of two years (range six months to 3.5 years). Fifteen
children had previously been treated with IVIG. Retrospective analysis
showed that trough IgG concentrations while receiving SCIG were
comparable with those while receiving IVIG during maintenance
treatment. In severe hypogammaglobulinaemia, however, initial loading
with SCIG or IVIG is probably indicated. During the treatment period
there was no systemic adverse reaction nor severe reaction requiring
admission to hospital. The subjective impression of all families was a
significant improvement in the quality of life. This preliminary
experience with SCIG in children suggests that it is an effective,
convenient, and well tolerated alternative to intravenous treatment.
Larger prospective studies are required to determine the place of SCIG
in the management of immunodeficiencies.
Since the 1950s, replacement of immunoglobulin G using human immunoglobulin has been the standard treatment for primary immunodeficiency diseases with defects in antibody production. These patients suffer from recurrent and severe infections, which cause lung damage and shorten their life span. Immunoglobulins given intravenously (IVIG) every 3–4 weeks are effective in preventing serious bacterial infections and improving the quality of life for treated patients. Administration of immunoglobulin subcutaneously (SCIG) is equally effective in preventing infections and has a lower incidence of serious adverse effects compared to IVIG. The tolerability and acceptability of SCIG has been demonstrated in numerous studies showing improvements in quality of life and a preference for subcutaneous immunoglobulin therapy in patients with antibody deficiencies.
primary immunodeficiency diseases; subcutaneous immunoglobulin; immunoglobulin G
In systemic sclerosis (SSc), joint involvement may reduce the functional capacity of the hands. Intravenous immunoglobulins have previously been shown to benefit patients with SSc.
To verify the efficacy of intravenous immunoglobulins on joint involvement and function in SSc.
Patients and methods
7 women with SSc, 5 with limited and 2 with diffuse SSc, with a severe and refractory joint involvement were enrolled in the study. Methotrexate and cyclophosphamide pulse therapy did not ameliorate joint symptoms. Hence, intravenous immunoglobulins therapy was prescribed at a dosage of 2 g/kg body weight during 4 days/month for six consecutive courses. The presence of joint tenderness and swelling, and articular deformities (due to primary joint involvement and not due to skin and subcutaneous changes) were evaluated. Before and after 6 months of treatment, patients were subjected to (1) Ritchie Index (RI) evaluation of joint involvement; (2) Dreiser Algo‐Functional Index (IAFD) evaluation of hand joint function; (3) pain visual analogue scale (VAS) to measure joint pain; (4) Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ) to evaluate the limitations in everyday living and physical disability; and (5) modified Rodnan Skin Score for skin involvement.
After 6 months of intravenous immunoglobulins therapy, joint pain and tenderness, measured with the VAS, decreased significantly (p<0.03), and hand function (IAFD) improved significantly (p<0.02), together with the quality of life (HAQ; p<0.03). All patients significantly improved, except for one. The skin score after 6 months of intravenous immunoglobulins therapy was significantly reduced (p<0.003).
This pilot study suggests that intravenous immunoglobulins may reduce joint pain and tenderness, with a significant recovery of joint function in patients with SSc with severe and refractory joint involvement. The cost of intravenous immunoglobulins might limit their use only to patients who failed disease‐modifying antirheumatic drugs.
Subcutaneous human IgG (SCIG) therapy in primary immunodeficiency (PID) offers sustained IgG levels throughout the dosing cycle and fewer adverse events (AEs) compared to intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG). A phase I study showed good local tolerability of IgPro20, a new 20% liquid SCIG stabilized with L-proline. A prospective, open-label, multicenter, single-arm, phase III study evaluated the efficacy and safety of IgPro20 in patients with PID over 15 months. Forty-nine patients (5–72 years) previously treated with IVIG received weekly subcutaneous infusions of IgPro20. The mean serum IgG level was 12.5 g/L. No serious bacterial infections were reported. There were 96 nonserious infections (rate 2.76/patient per year). The rate of days missed from work/school was 2.06/patient per year, and the rate of hospitalization was 0.2/patient per year. Ninety-nine percent of AEs were mild or moderate. No serious, IgPro20-related AEs were reported. IgPro20 effectively protected patients with PID against infections and maintained serum IgG levels without causing unexpected AEs.
Subcutaneous immunoglobulin (SCIG); primary immunodeficiency; local tolerability; serum IgG trough levels; L-proline; home infusion therapy
The importance of serum immunoglobulin (Ig)G concentration in IgG replacement therapy for primary immunodeficiency diseases is established in certain settings. Generally, IgG is infused via the intravenous (IVIG) or subcutaneous (SCIG) route. For IVIG infusion, published data demonstrate that higher IgG doses and trough levels provide patients with improved protection from infection. The same conclusions are not yet accepted for SCIG; data from two recent Phase III studies and a recent post-hoc analysis, however, suggest the same correlation between higher SCIG dose and serum IgG concentration and decreased incidence of infection seen with IVIG. Other measures of clinical efficacy have not been considered similarly. Thus, combined analyses of these and other published SCIG studies were performed; a full comparison of the 13 studies was, however, limited by non-standardized definitions and reporting. Despite these limitations, our analyses indicate that certain clinical outcomes improve at higher SCIG doses and associated higher serum IgG concentrations, and suggest that there might be opportunity to improve patient outcomes via SCIG dose adjustment.
dose; IgG replacement therapy; immunoglobulin; primary immunodeficiency; subcutaneous
The availability of weekly subcutaneous infusions of subcutaneous immunoglobulin (SCIg) provides an additional therapeutic option for patients with primary immunodeficiency disease. With proper patient education, individuals can safely transition to SCIg therapy and experience minimal side effects.
A plan for successful implementation of SCIg therapy is presented. Case reports illustrate the how to manage the transition from IVIg to home infusion of SCIg. In Case 1, despite training, home infusion was complicated by infusion-site reactions, the most common adverse event. Troubleshooting by the medical staff identified improper administration of SCIg, a correctable cause of reactions. In Case 2, patient education enabled this woman to successfully transition to SCIg without adverse effects, and without the headache and fatigue she experienced with IVIg.
Home infusion of SCIg can be successfully implemented with careful planning, patient/caregiver education, support, and follow-up.
immunodeficiency; primary; IgG deficiency; therapy; immunoglobulins; IV; subcutaneous; adverse effects
To compare the efficacy and safety of rapid acting insulin analog lispro given subcutaneously with that of standard low-dose intravenous regular insulin infusion protocolin patients with mild to moderate diabetic ketoacidosis.
Materials and Methods:
In this prospective, randomized and open trial, 50 consecutive patients of mild to moderate diabetic ketoacidosis were randomly assigned to two groups. The patients in group 1 were treated with intravenous regular insulin infusion and admitted in intensive care unit. The patients in group 2 were treated with subcutaneous insulin lispro 2 hourly and managed in the emergency medical ward. Response to therapy was assessed by duration of treatment and amount of insulin administered until resolution of hyperglycemia and ketoacidosis, total length of hospital stay, and number of hypoglycemic events in the two study groups.
The baseline clinical and biochemical parameters were similar between the two groups. There were no differences in the mean duration of treatment and amount of insulin required for correction of hyperglycemia and ketoacidosis. There was no mortality and no difference in the length of hospital stay between the two groups. The length of stay and amount of insulin required for correction of hyperglycemia was greater in patients who had infection as the precipitating cause than those with poor compliance. The hypoglycemic events were higher in the regular insulin group (2 vs1) than in the lispro group.
Patients with uncomplicated diabetic ketoacidosis can be managed in the medical wards with appropriate supervision and careful monitoring. Rapid acting insulin analog lispro is a safe and effective alternative to intravenous regular insulin for this subset of patients.
Diabetic ketoacidosis; hyperglycemic crises; insulin analog
Infectious complications represent a major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The etiology is postulated to be secondary to aberrations in cell-mediated immunity, as well as to therapy-related immunosuppression. Hypogammaglobulinemia, which occurs in virtually all patients with CLL, may be profound and correlates with disease duration and stage. Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) therapy has been used successfully to prevent and treat infections in this cohort of patients. However IVIG administration and treatment is not benign and should be used with caution given the potential manifestations of thromboembolic complications. High concentration and rapid infusion rate of the IVIG, as well as increased dose and osmolarity of the solution are thought to predispose to thrombotic events. Serum viscosity is the implicated mechanism for compromised blood flow and predisposition of high-risk patients to cardiovascular or cerebrovascular infarction. We report a case of IVIG related thromboembolic manifestations in a CLL patient, to highlight the importance of risk stratifying patients prior to treatment administration.
We present a 55-year-old Caucasian man with CLL who presented to our clinic with neutropenic fevers following a cycle of chemotherapy. Laboratory parameters revealed hypogammaglobulinemia prompting IVIG administration. Shortly thereafter, he developed a massive cascade of thromboembolic phenomena precipitating his demise.
The current consensus surrounding IVIG is that of a relatively safe treatment, with minor adverse effects such as hypertension, fever and chills, nausea, myalgias, or headache. However our report highlights the importance of proceeding with caution in the application of this therapy, as it's proclivity for thrombotic complications has not been fully elucidated in patients with underlying malignancies. Pre-existing thrombogenic risk factors should be carefully evaluated in patients undergoing treatment with IVIG. Clinical evaluation, with careful attention to vascular history and underlying co-morbidities can potentially unmask the high-risk patient where IVIG could be lethal.
Aims: To review our experience of anti-D immunoglobulin for immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) in patients with primary antibody deficiency.
Methods/patients: A retrospective case notes review of four Rhesus positive patients with ITP and primary antibody deficiency, treated with anti-D. Patients were refractory to steroids and high dose intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG). Two patients were previously splenectomised.
Results: All patients responded to anti-D immunoglobulin. Improved platelet counts were sustained for at least three months. Side effects included a fall in haemoglobin in all cases; one patient required red blood cell transfusion. Two patients had transient neutropenia (< 1 × 109/litre).
Conclusion: Anti-D immunoglobulin may be an effective treatment for antibody deficiency associated thrombocytopenia, even after splenectomy. Anti-D immunoglobulin may have considerable clinical advantages in this group of patients, where treatments resulting in further immunosuppression are relatively contraindicated.
anti-D immunoglobulin; immune thrombocytopenia; primary antibody deficiency; splenectomy
Background. Patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) often present with iron depletion and iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) because of frequent blood (and iron) loss. Therapy consists of repletion of iron stores and intravenous (i.v.) iron has become the standard care in this setting. However, older i.v. iron preparations have their limitations. This study primarily investigated the safety, and also the efficacy, of ferric carboxymaltose (FCM), a next-generation i.v. iron formulation, given as a bolus–push injection in patients with CKD undergoing maintenance haemodialysis (HD).
Methods. Patients (aged 18–65 years) with IDA undergoing HD received 100–200 mg of iron as FCM via an i.v. bolus–push injection into the HD venous line, two to three times weekly for ≤6 weeks. Safety assessments included incidence of adverse events (AEs). Treatment responders were patients attaining ≥1.0 g/dl increase in haemoglobin (Hb) from baseline at any time during the study. Enrolled patients (safety population) receiving ≥1 dose of study medication were included in the efficacy analyses [intent-to-treat (ITT) population].
Results. Of 163 patients enrolled, 150 (92%) completed the study. The mean ± SD total cumulative dose of iron as FCM administered was 2133.3 ± 57.7 mg. In total, 193 AEs were reported in 89 out of 163 (54.6%) patients. Almost three-quarters of patients (73.6%) received erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs), but the dose remained stable during the study. Serious AEs occurred in 12 out of 163 (7.4%) patients and two patients died; none of these was considered by the investigator to be related to the study medication. Only five out of 163 (3.1%) patients discontinued study medication due to an AE. Overall, 100 out of 162 (61.7%; ITT population) patients were treatment responders, and mean Hb levels increased from 9.1 ± 1.30 g/dl at baseline to 10.3 ± 1.63 g/dl at follow-up.
Conclusions. FCM is well-tolerated and effective in the correction of Hb levels and iron stores in patients with IDA undergoing HD. As changes in anaemia treatment other than i.v. FCM (e.g. increased ESA doses) were not permitted during the study, the clinically relevant increase in Hb in the majority of patients can be solely attributed to efficient iron utilization. The incidence of AEs was as expected for this population.
clinical trial; efficacy; ferric carboxymaltose; haemodialysis; iron deficiency anaemia; safety
The current treatment of primary antibody deficiency (PAD) is the early recognition of the condition and replacement immunoglobulin combined with prompt treatment of infections and complications. The route of administration (intravenous or subcutaneous), dose and frequency of administration of immunoglobulin still vary between centres and countries. Most infections in patients with PAD are reduced but not entirely prevented by replacement immunoglobulin, with sinopulmonary infections accounting for the bulk of the remainder. Although there have been reports of meningitis in patients with PAD before replacement treatment, we describe the first two cases of bacterial meningitis (group B Neisseria meningitidis) on adequate immunoglobulin replacement and discuss the involvement of potential cofactors.
RMP-7, a bradykinin analog, temporarily increases the permeability of the blood-brain tumor barrier to chemotherapy drugs like carboplatin. We conducted a randomized, controlled trial of carboplatin and RMP-7 versus carboplatin and placebo in patients with recurrent malignant glioma. The primary outcome measure was time to tumor progression (TTP). Adults with recurrent glioblastoma multiforme or anaplastic glioma were randomized in a 1:1 ratio to receive carboplatin and either RMP-7 or placebo. Radiation therapy had failed in all patients, and they may have received prior chemotherapy. Carboplatin (dosed to achieve an area under the curve of 5 mg/ml x time for patients who had received prior chemotherapy, or 7 mg/ml x time for those who had not) was given intravenously every 4 weeks, followed by intravenous infusion of either RMP-7 or placebo (300 ng/kg). TTP, tumor response, neuropsychological assessments, functional independence, and quality of life assessments were analyzed every 4 weeks. There were 122 patients enrolled, 62 in the RMP-7 and carboplatin group and 60 in the placebo and carboplatin group. Median TTP was 9.7 weeks (95% CI, 8.3-12.6 weeks) for the RMP-7 and carboplatin group and 8.0 weeks (95% CI, 7.4-12.6 weeks) for the placebo and carboplatin group. Median survival times were 26.9 weeks (95% CI, 21.3-37.6 weeks) for the RMP-7 group and 19.9 weeks (95% CI, 15.0-31.3 weeks) for the placebo group. No differences were noted for time to worsening of neuropsychological assessments, functional independence, or quality of life assessments. The use of RMP-7 had no effect on the pharmacokinetics or toxicity of carboplatin. At the dose and schedule used in this trial, RMP-7 did not improve the efficacy of carboplatin. Recent preclinical pharmacokinetic modeling of RMP-7 suggests that higher doses of RMP-7 may be required to increase carboplatin delivery to tumor.
Background:0 Primary antibody deficiency disorders are a heterogeneous group of disorders, which are treated by regular infusions of immunoglobulin. Despite replacement treatment, patients remain susceptible to infection. Effective management of infections is necessary to prevent the complications of chronic infection.
Aims: This retrospective survey of clinical practice examined the management of infections in patients who receive immunoglobulin replacement for immune deficiency.
Methods: Patients who received immunoglobulin replacement treatment in Newcastle during the year 2000 were identified. Medical records were reviewed. Basic clinical information and details of immunoglobulin replacement treatment were recorded. Episodes of infection were defined by documented symptoms, signs, or investigation results, and by the prescription of an antibiotic course. Details of episodes of infection and antimicrobial treatment were recorded.
Results: Thirty seven patients received immunoglobulin replacement during 2000. There were 101 episodes of infection. There was no correlation between the frequency of infection and the IgG trough value. Respiratory tract infections were most common (71 of 101). Where documented, 80% of infections were associated with clinical signs, 21% with pyrexia, and 64% with a raised C reactive protein value. Microbiological culture was performed in 30% of infections. Antimicrobial treatment was instituted along “best guess” lines in 99 of 101 episodes of infection.
Conclusions: Management of respiratory tract infections represents the largest problem in antibody deficient patients. Greater use of microbiological culture might allow more effective prescription of antimicrobial treatment. The generation of treatment guidelines and improved communication with general practitioners could improve the management of all episodes of infection.
infection; antibody deficiency; hypogammaglobulinaemia
Variation in clinical practice and its effect on outcome is little known for rare diseases such as primary antibody deficiency. As part of a national audit a survey of all 30 consultant immunologists in the United Kingdom dealing with primary antibody deficiency syndromes in adults and children was carried out in 1993 to ascertain their practices in diagnosis and management. Consensus guidelines were published after the survey was completed. Comparison of the survey results of clinical practice at the time the guidelines were published with the standards identified highlighted that the practice of a minority of specialists was at variance with their peers and with the consensus document, particularly in the use of intramuscular immunoglobulin, the dose and frequency of intravenous immunoglobulin, and target trough immunoglobulin G concentration, which has implications for the quality of patient care. However, much closer agreement existed in the key areas of management, such as diagnosis and selection of intravenous immunoglobulin. The approach and the problems identified are relevant to the management of other rare diseases, in which diagnosis and management is complex and there are few specialists with the necessary knowledge to undertake such care. This survey, the first attempted audit of practice, shows that within a motivated group of specialists highly significant differences in practice may exist and the authors emphasise the importance of setting clear guidelines against which care can be assessed.
A 54 year old woman presented with symptoms resulting from a thrombosis of the lateral transverse and sagittal sinuses the day after an infusion of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) replacement treatment. She had previously suffered a milder episode after IVIg. Following recurrent bacterial chest infections and sinusitis for more than 40 years, a diagnosis of IgG1 deficiency had been made two years earlier, after exclusion of other causes. She made a good recovery from the thrombosis but high platelet counts were investigated and primary thrombocythaemia was diagnosed. Investigation of humoral immunity revealed protective amounts of IgG antibodies to pathogens, and because the previous IgG1 deficiency had resolved IVIg infusions were not restarted. She made a good response to treatment with hydroxyurea, with improvement of the headaches and lowering of the platelet counts. Prophylactic antibiotics reduced the number of bacterial chest infections and nasal corticosteroids improved the chronic sinusitis. This case is presented to highlight the need to look for other contributing factors for severe recurrent headaches after IVIg treatment, and to consider the risk of thrombosis even when replacement doses of IVIg are used. It is also important to emphasise the need to ensure that an isolated IgG subclass deficiency is not transient; that failure to produce specific IgG antibodies to immunisation and/or exposure antigens is confirmed, thus meeting the criteria for the diagnosis of primary antibody deficiency. A thorough risk–benefit assessment is essential before blood product treatment is started.
Iron, transferrin and ferritin were measured in serum samples from 16 patients with primary hypogammaglobulinaemia. Transferrin saturation was low in 12 patients (75%) and serum ferritin was low in 9 patients (56.25%). Both parameters were low, confirming the state of iron deficiency, in 6 patients (37.5%). These figures are highly significant (P less than 0.01) when compared with the prevalence of iron deficiency in the general population. Eight patients were maintained on intravenous immunoglobulin infusions and the rest on intramuscular immunoglobulin injections, their mean serum IgG being 4.4 g/l and 2.6 g/l respectively. There was no difference in the prevalence of iron deficiency between the two groups.
Early treatment of prolonged seizures with benzodiazepines given intravenously by paramedics in the prehospital setting has been shown to be associated with improved outcomes. However, an increasing number of Emergency Medical System (EMS) protocols use an intramuscular (IM) route because it is faster and consistently achievable. RAMPART (Rapid Anticonvulsant Medication Prior to Arrival Trial) is a double-blind randomized clinical trial to determine if the efficacy of IM midazolam is non-inferior by a margin of 10% to that of intravenous (IV) lorazepam in patients treated by paramedics for status epilepticus. Children and adults with >5 minutes of convulsions who are still seizing after paramedic arrival are administered study medication by IM autoinjector or IV infusion. The primary efficacy outcome is absence of seizures at emergency department (ED) arrival, without EMS rescue therapy. Safety outcomes include acute endotracheal intubation and recurrent seizures. Secondary outcomes include timing of treatment and initial seizure cessation. At the time of writing this communication, enrollment of all subjects is near completion and the study data will soon be analyzed.
binary outcome; intravenous; intramuscular; lorazepam; midazolam; placebo; seizure termination
We report the immunomodulatory effects of an intravenous treatment with F(ab')2 fragments of the bispecific monoclonal antibody BIS-1 during subcutaneous recombinant interleukin 2 (rIL-2) therapy of renal cell cancer (RCC) patients. BIS-1 is directed against both the CD3 antigen on T cells and the EGP-2 molecule on carcinoma cells and some normal epithelia. The amount of BIS-1 F(ab')2 bound to peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) increased dose-dependently. This occupation degree was highest at the end of the 2 h infusion and rapidly decreased subsequently. During the first hour of BIS-1 F(ab')2 infusion the number of PBLs decreased slowly. This was followed by an increase in serum tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) concentrations and a rapid decrease in the numbers of peripheral blood lymphocytes, monocytes and eosinophils. In our view, the most likely explanation for the observed decrease in occupation degree of BIS-1 F(ab')2 and the rise in TNF-alpha levels is based on the assumption that BIS-1-carrying T cells leave the circulation. The CD3 antigens on these extravasated T cells become cross-linked by EGP-2 antigens, inducing TNF-alpha secretion. This results in an enhanced decrease in the numbers of PBLs, monocytes and eosinophils. These preliminary results suggest that BIS-1 F(ab')2 treatment during IL-2 therapy may induce local T-cell activation.
We sought to determine the safety and efficacy of enoxaparin versus unfractionated heparin during percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). Four hundred ninety-three consecutive patients undergoing elective or emergency PCI received unfractionated heparin (70 U/kg, intravenously) or enoxaparin (1 mg/kg, intravenously). Patients who had received subcutaneous enoxaparin in the emergency department were given a supplementary 0.3-mg/kg intravenous dose. There was no crossover of therapies. All patients received oral antiplatelet therapy and eptifibatide. Primary safety outcomes were bleeding and a postprocedural hemoglobin decrease of ≥3 g/dL. Troponin I levels were considered a marker for myocardial injury.
Two hundred twenty-two patients received enoxaparin, and 271 received unfractionated heparin. There were no thrombotic events or in-hospital deaths. Multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that, compared with unfractionated heparin, enoxaparin yielded a lower risk of bleeding (odds ratio [OR]=0.47; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.21–1.05) and significantly fewer >3-g/dL decreases in hemoglobin (OR=0.45; 95% CI, 0.22–0.94). Enoxaparin also produced less of a decrease in mean platelet count (41 ± 34 vs 55 ± 63 ×109/L; P = 0.02) and in platelets >30% from baseline (OR=0.56; 95% CI, 0.31–0.99). After elective PCI, fewer enoxaparin patients had troponin I levels ≥3 times the upper limit of normal (OR=0.40; 95% CI, 0.028–0.66).
Compared with unfractionated heparin, enoxaparin entailed less bleeding during both elective and emergent PCI and less cardiac enzyme elevation in patients undergoing elective PCI. Therefore, we believe that intravenous enoxaparin is a safe alternative to unfractionated heparin in both settings.
Angioplasty, transluminal, percutanous coronary; anticoagulants; enoxaparin/therapeutic use; catheterization; heparin/therapeutic use; heparin, low-molecular-weight; heparin, unfractionated; treatment outcome
To compare the improvements in glycemic control associated with transitioning to insulin pump therapy in patients using continuous glucose monitoring versus standard blood glucose self-monitoring.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
The RealTrend study was a 6-month, randomized, parallel-group, two-arm, open-label study of 132 adults and children with uncontrolled type 1 diabetes (A1C ≥8%) being treated with multiple daily injections. One group was fitted with the Medtronic MiniMed Paradigm REAL-Time system (PRT group), an insulin pump with integrated continuous subcutaneous glucose monitoring (CGM) capability, with instructions to wear CGM sensors at least 70% of the time. Conventional insulin pump therapy was initiated in the other group (continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion [CSII] group). Outcome measures included A1C and glycemic variability.
A total of 115 patients completed the study. Between baseline and trial end, A1C improved significantly in both groups (PRT group −0.81 ± 1.09%, P < 0.001; CSII group −0.57 ± 0.94%, P < 0.001), with no significant difference between groups. When the 91 patients who were fully protocol-compliant (including CGM sensor wear ≥70% of the time) were considered, A1C improvement was significantly greater in the PRT group (P = 0.004) (PRT group −0.96 ± 0.93%, P < 0.001; CSII group −0.55 ± 0.93%, P < 0.001). Hyperglycemia parameters decreased in line with improvements in A1C with no impact on hypoglycemia.
CGM-enabled insulin pump therapy improves glycemia more than conventional pump therapy during the first 6 months of pump use in patients who wear CGM sensors at least 70% of the time.