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Publication Detail
Adverse infusion reactions to rituximab in systemic lupus erythematosus: a retrospective analysis.
Background: To undertake a retrospective review of patients with SLE who had received Rituximab in order to determine the rates and associated patient characteristics of clinically significant adverse infusion reactions. Methods: A descriptive analysis was undertaken of each infusion reaction, which was then assessed using the clinical information available to hypothesise on the possible underlying mechanism(s). Results: Records of 136 SLE patients previously treated with 481 individual infusions of Rituximab were reviewed. A total of 22 patients (17.6%) had 28 (5.8% of total infusions) documented clinically significant adverse infusion reactions. Average age at first Rituximab infusion in patients without a reaction was 37 years (range 16-73) compared with 30 years (range 18-56) in those with a reaction. A high proportion of men (18.2%) experienced an infusion reaction. Severity and type of reaction varied. 6.4% of those who had a reaction were not retreated. Conclusions: While Rituximab remains an important tool in the treatment of SLE it is important to be aware that rates of infusion reactions may be more significant in SLE than in other diseases. A prospective study is required to better characterise the reactions.
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