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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Cold agglutinin disease


Other Names for this Disease
  • Anemia, hemolytic, cold antibody
  • CAD
  • CAS
  • Chronic cold agglutinin disease
  • Cold agglutinin syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Treatment

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How might cold agglutinin disease be treated?

The treatment of cold agglutinin disease depends on many factors including the severity of the condition, the signs and symptoms present in each person, and the underlying cause. For example, in those affected by secondary cold agglutinin disease, it is important to diagnose and treat the underlying condition which may include certain types of cancer; bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections; and/or other autoimmune disease.[1][2]

People with few symptoms and/or mild anemia may not require any specific treatment. These cases are often managed by simply avoiding exposure to the cold. In severe cases, medical interventions may be necessary. Rituximab (an antibody that selectively reduces specific types of immune cells) may be recommended either alone or in combination with other medications for people with severe hemolysis. Plasmapheresis, which involves filtering blood to remove antibodies, and/or blood transfusions may be an option for temporary relief of severe symptoms. Other therapies exist; however, they have been used with variable success. Medscape Reference's Web site offers more specific information about these alternative treatments. Please click on the link to access this resource.[1][2]
Last updated: 5/6/2015

References
  1. Salman Abdullah Aljubran, MD. Cold Agglutinin Disease. Medscape Reference. April 2015; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/135327-overview.
  2. Stanley L Schrier, MD; Wendell F Rosse, MD. Clinical features and treatment of autoimmune hemolytic anemia: Cold agglutinins. UpToDate. December 2014; Accessed 5/5/2015.


GARD Video Tutorial

  • Finding Treatment Information - A video developed by GARD Information Specialists that explains how you can find information about treatment for a rare disease.

    Finding Treatment Information

Clinical Trials & Research for this Disease

  • ClinicalTrials.gov lists trials that are studying or have studied Cold agglutinin disease. Click on the link to go to ClinicalTrials.gov to read descriptions of these studies.
Other Names for this Disease
  • Anemia, hemolytic, cold antibody
  • CAD
  • CAS
  • Chronic cold agglutinin disease
  • Cold agglutinin syndrome
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.