Cold agglutinin disease
Other Names for this Disease
- Anemia, hemolytic, cold antibody
- Cold antibody disease
- Cold antibody hemolytic anemia
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autoimmune hemolytic anemia in which the body's immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys its own red blood cells. When affected people's blood is exposed to cold temperatures (32º to 50º F), certain proteins that normally attack bacteria (IgM antibodies) attach themselves to red blood cells and bind them together into clumps (agglutination). This eventually causes red blood cells to be prematurely destroyed (hemolysis) leading to anemia and other associated signs and symptoms. Cold agglutinin disease can be primary (unknown cause) or secondary, due to an underlying condition such as an infection, another autoimmune disease, or certain cancers. Treatment depends on many factors including the severity of the condition, the signs and symptoms present in each person, and the underlying cause.Cold agglutinin disease is a rare type of
Last updated: 5/6/2015
- Salman Abdullah Aljubran, MD. Cold Agglutinin Disease. Medscape Reference. April 2015; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/135327-overview.
- Anemia, Hemolytic, Cold Antibody. NORD. March 2008; http://www.rarediseases.org/rare-disease-information/rare-diseases/byID/723/viewFullReport.
- 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.
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