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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 235-237

Childhood-onset systemic lupus erythematosus, probably triggered by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection, presenting with autoimmune haemolytic anaemia

1 Department of Pediatrics, Baby Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode, Kerala, India
2 Department of Clinical Hematology, Baby Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode, Kerala, India
3 Department of Pathology, Baby Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Abdul Rauf
Department of Pediatrics, Baby Memorial Hospital, Kozhikode - 673 004, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/cmrp.cmrp_123_21

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Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a multisystemic and chronic autoimmune disease with varying clinical manifestations. The role of various infectious agents in triggering the disease onset in genetically predisposed patients has been implicated in the pathogenesis of SLE. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 has been reported to trigger various autoimmune diseases including SLE in few adults. Herein, we report the case of a previously well 12-year-old girl who presented with warm antibody Coombs-positive autoimmune haemolytic anaemia, 3 weeks after testing positive for COVID-19. COVID IgG antibody test was positive. During the hospital stay, she developed multisystem involvement in the form of neurological manifestations and arthritis. She was managed with steroids, intravenous (IV) immunoglobulins and supportive measures. Her anti-nuclear antibody and anti-dsDNA antibodies were positive and complement levels were low, confirming a diagnosis of SLE. Her clinical condition improved rapidly and remained neurologically normal, and serial haemoglobin showed an improving trend. IV steroids were changed to oral form, and hydroxychloroquine was also added. She remained well on 3-week follow-up.

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