What diseases can be treated with apheresis?
When used in a therapeutic manner, the apheresis procedure is individualized regarding the frequency of treatments, the volume of blood or components to be removed, and the type of solution used for volume replacement.
The following list of conditions for which apheresis may be of benefit is not all-inclusive. Apheresis can be used in the treatment of:
- myasthenia gravis,
- Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia,
- Goodpasture's syndrome,
- familial hypercholesterolemia,
- hyperviscosity syndrome (such as mixed cryoglobulinemia, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura),
- the HELLP syndrome of pregnancy,
- clogging of blood vessels (leukostasis) cause by severely elevated white blood count in leukemia, and
- severely elevated platelet counts in leukemia or myeloproliferative disorders.
Apheresis can also be effective in certain cases of:
- systemic lupus with life-threatening complications,
- severe vasculitis,
- polymyositis or dermatomyositis,
- severe rheumatoid arthritis,
- rapidly progressive glomerulonephritis,
- chronic autoimmune polyneuropathy, and
- in cases of solid organ transplantation with a high risk of antibody-mediated rejection of the transplant.