Lupus anticoagulant (LAC) testing includes a screening, mixing and confirmation step. Although recently published guidelines on LAC testing are a useful step towards standardization, a lack of consensus remains whether to express mixing tests in clotting time (CT) or index of circulating anticoagulant (ICA). The influence of anticoagulant therapy, e.g. vitamin K antagonists (VKA) or direct oral anticoagulants (DOAC) on both methods of interpretation remains to be investigated. The objective of this study was to contribute to a simplification and standardization of the LAC three-step interpretation on the level of the mixing test.Methods:
Samples from 148 consecutive patients with LAC request and prolonged screening step, and 77 samples from patients non-suspicious for LAC treated with VKA (n=37) or DOAC (n=30) were retrospectively evaluated. An activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT) and dilute Russell's viper venom time (dRVVT) were used for routine LAC testing. The supplemental anticoagulant samples were tested with dRVVT only. We focused on the interpretation differences for mixing tests expressed as CT or ICA and compared the final LAC conclusion within each distinct group of concordant and discordant mixing test results.Results:
Mixing test interpretation by CT resulted in 10 (dRVVT) and 16 (aPTT) more LAC positive patients compared to interpretation with ICA. Isolated prolonged dRVVT screen mix ICA results were exclusively observed in samples from VKA-treated patients without suspicion for LAC.Conclusions:
We recommend using CT in respect to the 99th percentile cut-off for interpretation of mixing steps in order to reach the highest sensitivity and specificity in LAC detection.