- JAPAN SOC INTERNAL MEDICINE
A 51-year-old woman with overt congestive heart failure with pleural and pericardial effusion was treated with furosemide and nifedipine, leading to improvement in her condition and a decrease in effusions. An echocardiography demonstrated mitral and aortic regurgitation with mitral valve prolapse, which caused the congestive heart failure. Since leukocytopenia and lymphocytopenia with arthralgia could be observed, serological investigations were performed. She was diagnosed as having systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) with antiphospholipid syndrome, and started;on a treatment of prednisolone and aspirin. Based on the treatment, the pleural and pericardial effusion went into complete remission, indicating that the serositis related to SLE had overlapped the heart failure. Since there was no evidence of any other diseases that could be responsible for the valvular lesions, we concluded that they were due to antiphospholipid syndrome. The administration of prednisolone had no significant effect on valvular morphology or function as demonstrated by echocardiography. When patients with valvular disease are seen, a valvulopathy related to antiphospholipid syndrome should be considered as part of the differential diagnosis.
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