Karpac CA, Li X, Terrell DR, Kremer Hovinga JA, Lämmle B, Vesely SK, George JN
Although diarrhoea-associated haemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) in children is well described, the clinical features of bloody diarrhoea-associated thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP)-HUS in adults are not documented. Twenty-one adults, 6.5% of the 322 adults in The Oklahoma TTP-HUS Registry, 1989-2006, have presented with bloody diarrhoea. There were no case clusters. Escherichia coli O157:H7 was identified in five patients, but many patients did not have appropriate studies. The annual incidence was 0.68/10(6), 10-fold less than the incidence of diarrhoea-associated HUS in children in Oklahoma. Two (13%) of 16 patients in whom ADAMTS13 (A Disintegrin And Metalloproteinase with a ThromboSpondin type 1 motif, member 13) was measured had<10% activity. Severe neurological abnormalities (67%) and renal failure (62%) were common; seven patients (33%) died; no survivors have relapsed. Compared to the 38 other Oklahoma Registry patients with ADAMTS13<10%, frequency of severe neurological abnormalities and death was not different; frequency of renal failure was greater; frequency of relapse was less. Compared to 5999 children with sporadic diarrhoea-associated HUS in published reports, frequency of renal failure and relapse was not different; frequency of severe neurological abnormalities and death was greater (P<0.05 for all differences). Awareness of the continuous occurrence of sporadic bloody diarrhoea-associated TTP-HUS in adults is important for prompt diagnosis and appropriate management.
College of Public Health, The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK 73190, USA.