Epidemiology of therapeutic apheresis with a multidisciplinary approach at a high volume pediatric center

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Abstract

Introduction:

Therapeutic apheresis (TA) is used inconsistently in pediatric populations. We seek to define our multidisciplinary institutional practice.

Methods:

We conducted a retrospective chart review of patients receiving TA from January 1, 2012 through October 31, 2015. Data collected included demographics, American Society of Apheresis (ASFA) indication, complications, and mortality.

Results:

Over 46 months, 1198 TA procedures were conducted on 289 patients ranging in age from 5 months to 21 years with weights ranging from 4.76 to 170.3 kg (16 procedures in patients <10 kg). The procedures were 86% therapeutic plasma exchange, 10% red blood cell exchange, 4% extracorporeal photopheresis, and 5 leukocytapheresis procedures. TA was initiated in different clinical environments: 41% outpatient, 37% intensive care, 15% general inpatient, and 7% operating room. The ASFA category (6th edition) indications for the 1198 procedures included: 44% category I, 25% category II, 23% category III, a single category IV procedure, and the remainder (8%) uncategorized by ASFA. The rate of procedure failure and procedure-related mortality are 1 and 0%, respectively. Case mortality rate was 4%.

Conclusion:

At a large volume pediatric hospital, TA is commonly used and can be performed safely in a variety of settings by a multidisciplinary team. This demographic review catalogs the number and type of procedures performed as a second-line therapy or on the basis of limited evidence. Additional collaborative investigation is needed to evaluate unique implications of TA in pediatrics to maximize efficacy while preserving safety.

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