06-10-2005, 01:58 PM
Anyone ever heard of Gamma Gobulin infusions for Nephritis ? I was taken off Cytoxan b/c of poor results. Now doc wants to try this, and I have never heard of it for this condition. Anyone used it with success ?
06-12-2005, 04:56 PM
Hi Angie ;
Here is what I was able to find out about Gamma Globulin treatments for Lupus and Lupus Nephritis.
"Intravenous Immunoglobulin (also called gamma globulin) is used against antiphospholipid antibodies (ANA). This treatment has helped improve fever, arthritis, and thrombocytopenia (reduction in blood platelets). It does not appear to relieve skin problems. In some cases, SLE has worsened with this treatment. Intravenous gamma globulin has been used in a number of small series of patients with lupus, including those resistant to conventional treatments, with some encouraging results.
IVIG is an immunomodulating agent that has multiple activities. These include modulation of complement activation; suppression of idiotypic antibodies; saturation of Fc receptors on macrophages; and suppression of various inflammatory mediators, including cytokines, chemokines, and metalloproteinases. Various preparations and dosages have been used for periods up to 6 mo or 1 yr. Relapse after improvement is seen frequently. Transient decline in renal function may follow its use in nephrotic patients.
The first use of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) was for patients with variousimmunodeficiency states. Currently, it has become an accepted treatment in some autoimmune diseases, such as myositis/dermatomyositis, Guillain-Barre syndrome, and immune thrombocytopenic purpura.
The use of IVIg and its beneficial role in other autoimmune conditions, such as SLE, is not yet established, and, as mentioned before, in some cases, is even controversial. It is usually used on SLE patients, in whom cytotoxic immunosuppression is contraindicated or not sufficient to control the disease. In order to prevent rebound autoantibody production, low doses of normal human immunoglobulin are substituted for immunosuppressive drugs.
Since there have not been enough clinical studies about IVIg for lupus nephritis, there is no simple answer to the question: does intravenous immunoglobulin work? It appears that, a thorough review of the current data on mechanisms of action, efficacy, and safety of intravenous immunoglobulins in lupus nephritis has only demonstrated that the answer depends on the disease and the patients involved.
Hopefully, your doctor will keep a close and careful watch over you during your treatment with IVIg. I would suggest that you learn as much as you can about the treatment in order to stay informed and to be able to intelligently and actively work with your doctors!
Best Of Luck