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Clinical observations on infliximab treatment of infantile onset Takayasu arteritis

Pediatr Rheumatol Online J. 2022 Aug 4;20(1):61. doi: 10.1186/s12969-022-00708-4.


BACKGROUND: There is insufficient evidence on the clinical effectiveness and safety of infliximab (IFX) treatment of Takayasu arteritis (TA) in infants.

METHODS: We evaluated the therapeutic effectiveness and safety of IFX in a retrospective case series of 10 infantile TA patients. Observations included assessment of clinical symptoms, laboratory testing, and vascular imaging.

RESULTS: Fever was the presenting symptom for 8 of 10 infants with TA. During acute episodes, leucocyte and inflammatory indices were significantly increased. Vascular imaging showed the most commonly involved arteries to be carotid arteries, abdominal aortas, and coronary arteries (9 cases, 90%). Two weeks after initiating IFX treatment, leukocyte and platelet counts decreased and hemoglobin levels increased. There were statistically significant clinical improvements 6 weeks after starting treatment compared with before treatment (p < 0.05). Inflammatory indices decreased 2 weeks after starting IFX treatment compared with before treatment (p < 0.05). Vascular lesions began to recover within 1.5-3 months of initiating IFX therapy, and involved vessels significantly recovered within 13 months. Some arteries remained stenotic, with intimal thickening and uneven lumen wall thicknesses. The only adverse event was a treatment-responsive allergic reaction during IFX infusion in one infant.

CONCLUSIONS: Fever was the main manifestation of illness and was often accompanied by significantly increased inflammatory indices. IFX treatment was apparently effective and reduced or eliminated need for glucocorticoids. IFX had a reasonably good safety profile.

PMID:35927694 | DOI:10.1186/s12969-022-00708-4

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