Neuromyelitis optica (NMO, Devic's disease), an uncommon demyelinating neuro-immunological disease, can be associated with autoimmune diseases. In SLE associated forms anti-aquaporin-4 antibody positivity can help differentiating between SLE nerve system manifestation and NMO. In the literature rituximab, or immunoablative dose cyclophosphamide (CYC) was effective for the therapy resistant forms. Authors present 2 SLE overlapping NMO cases, one of them with SLE associated interstitial lung disease (ILD). In both cases neurological manifestations anticipated other SLE symptoms. Patients previously were treated with high dose corticosteroid therapy, plasmapheresis, and one of them with azathioprine, and the other one with oral CYC (which could not prevent flares). 0.5g/m2 body-surface monthly parenteral inductive CYC therapy was administered, in one patient followed by quarterly maintenance therapy. This patient completed her 18month maintenance treatment and has been in neurological remission, but required steroid pulse and plasmapheresis for lung symptoms. The second patient had urogenital infection after the induction phase, followed by an exacerbation, requiring plasmapheresis and high dose parenteral corticosteroid treatment. After it he refused CYC therapy and has been taking azathioprine. He has no new symptoms, only residual ones. In our two patients conventional dose CYC therapy proved to be effective for NMO/SLE overlap, required only transient supportive therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy