Drug-induced thrombocytopenia secondary to natalizumab treatment
- 1Department of Neurology, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas, USA
- 2University of Massachusetts, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA
- 3Department of Neurology, University of Massachusetts, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA
- Correspondence to Dr Saef Izzy,
- Accepted 3 May 2014
- Published 30 May 2014
A 52-year-old woman with a 10-year history of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) was started on natalizumab after she developed side effects for interferon β-1a and glatiramer acetate. The patient presented with acute severe infusion reaction after the third treatment with natalizumab, developing whole-body purpura. Laboratory testing revealed progressive worsening thrombocytopenia up to 3 weeks following natalizumab discontinuation. Platelet antibodies to platelet-specific antigen as well as antibodies against natalizumab were positive. Bone marrow biopsy was negative. The patient was diagnosed with drug-induced immune thrombocytopenia (DITP) as a rare case of natalizumab side effect which was treated with intravenous methylprednisolone followed by rituximab with successful resolution of thrombocytopenia. The patient had a stable course of RRMS with no relapses and no brain MRI changes at 2 years after initiation of rituximab.