- Human protein C concentrate in the treatment of purpura fulminans: a retrospective analysis of safety and outcome in 94 pediatric patients (2010)
- Introduction: Purpura fulminans (PF) is a devastating complication of uncontrolled systemic inflammation, associated with high incidence of amputations, skin grafts and death. In this study, we aimed to clarify the clinical profile of pediatric patients with PF who improved with protein C (PC) treatment, explore treatment effects and safety, and to refine the prognostic significance of protein C plasma levels. Methods: In Germany, patients receiving protein C concentrate (Ceprotin(R), Baxter AG, Vienna, Austria) are registered. The database was used to locate all pediatric patients with PF treated with PC from 2002 to 2005 for this National, retrospective, multi-centered study. Results: Complete datasets were acquired in 94 patients, treated in 46 centers with human, non-activated protein C concentrate for purpura fulminans. PC was given for 2 days (median, range 1-24 days) with a median daily dose of 100 IU/kg. Plasma protein C levels increased from a median of 27% to a median of 71% under treatment. 22.3% of patients died, 77.7% survived to discharge. Skin grafts were required in 9.6%, amputations in 5.3%. PF recovered or improved in 79.8%, remained unchanged in 13.8% and deteriorated in 6.4%. Four adverse events occurred in 3 patients, none classified as severe. Non-survivors had lower protein C plasma levels (P < 0.05) and higher prevalence of coagulopathy at admission (P < 0.01). Time between admission and start of PC substitution was longer in patients who died compared to survivors (P = 0.03). Conclusions: This retrospective dataset shows that, compared to historic controls, only few pediatric patients with PF under PC substitution needed dermatoplasty and/or amputations. Apart from epistaxis, no bleeding was observed. Although the data comes from a retrospective study, the evidence we present suggests that PC had a beneficial impact on the need for dermatoplasty and amputations, pointing to the potential value of carrying out a prospective randomised controlled trial.
- Protein C preserves microcirculation in a model of neonatal septic shock (2009)
- Objectives: Sepsis remains a disease with a high mortality in neonates. Microcirculatory impairment plays a pivotal role in the development of multiorgan failure in septic newborns. The hemodynamic effects of recombinant activated protein C (rhAPC) were tested in an animal model of neonatal septic shock focusing on intestinal microcirculation. Materials and methods: Endotoxic shock was triggered by intravenous application of Escherichia coli lipopolysaccarides in newborn piglets. Thereafter, five animals received a continuous infusion of 24 µg/kg/h rhAPC, and five received vehicle for control. Over the course of three hours, intestinal microcirculation was assessed by intravital microscopy every 30 min. Macrocirculation and blood counts were monitored simultaneously. Results: After a short hypotensive period in all animals, the arterial blood pressure returned to baseline in the rhAPC-treated piglets, whereas the hypotension became increasingly severe in the controls. By 90 min, mean blood pressure in the controls was significantly lower than in the treatment group. Similar observations were made regaring microcirculation. After an early impairment in all study animals, functional capillary density and intestinal microcirculatory red blood cell velocity and red blood cell flow recovered in the rhAPC group, but deteriorated further in the control piglets. Conclusion: Recombinant activated protein C protects macro- and microcirculation from endotoxic shock.