The Antiphospholipid Syndrome (APS) was described in the early '80s as a combination of thrombosis, thrombocytopenia and recurrent miscarriages associated with persistent high titers of Antiphospholipid Antibodies (aPL). In subsequent years, it became apparent that aPL were also associated with premature atherosclerosis in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) and more recently in primary APS (PAPS). The studies exploring atherosclerosis in PAPS were heterogeneous in conception and size, but overall, provided enough evidence that Intima Media Thickness (IMT) of carotid arteries and endothelial function are abnormal in PAPS. In keeping with the general view that atherosclerosis is a low grade inflammatory and "auto"immune disorder characterized by oxidative and nitrative stress, several studies have confirmed similar findings in PAPS, though a specific relation with the severity of atherosclerosis is lacking. Given its development at an earlier age than average, atherosclerosis should be taken into account in the overall management of PAPS patients as it may significantly add to the vascular risk.
- Antiphospholipid syndrome
- Intima media thickness
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine