Natural History, Pathogenesis, and Treatment of Evans Syndrome in Children

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Primary Evans syndrome (ES) is defined by the concurrent or sequential occurrence of immune thrombocytopenia and autoimmune hemolytic anemia in the absence of an underlying etiology. The syndrome is characterized by a chronic, relapsing, and potentially fatal course requiring long-term immunosuppressive therapy. Treatment of ES is hardly evidence-based. Corticosteroids are the mainstay of therapy. Rituximab has emerged as the most widely used second-line treatment, as it can safely achieve high response rates and postpone splenectomy. An increasing number of new genetic defects involving critical pathways of immune regulation identify specific disorders, which explain cases of ES previously reported as “idiopathic”.

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