There are many reports in the literature associating lupus anticoagulant with fetal death. Successful pregnancies have been reported following suppression of the antibody by prednisone and the addition of antiaggre-gants and possibly anticoagulants. This report describes our experience treating such patients and the outcome of subsequent pregnancies. The results are less successful than the figures in the literature, 13 live births out of 27 pregnancies in 19 patients. This may be due to lupus anticoagulant being diagnosed as the cause for a wide variety of clinical presentations including habitual first trimester abortion, mid trimester fetal death, intrauterine growth retardation and placental dysfunction in the third trimester. Our experience shows that steroids and antiaggregants have a definite place in cases of second and third trimester fetal death and in cases of clinical systemic lupus erythematosus. However, lupus anticoagulant is one of a spectrum of autoantibodies whose pathophysiology has not been fully elucidated. It is questionable whether this regimen of treatment has a place in patients with no previous fetal loss or in cases of primary habitual abortion.
- Fetal death
- Lupus anticoagulant