Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is an autoimmune disorder resulting in the production of antibodies directed against red blood cell antigens, causing shortened erythrocyte survival. The disorder is an acquired hemolysis, and can be idiopathic or secondary to other autoimmune disorders, malignancies, or infections. Building on the recommendations that emerged from the First International Consensus Meeting on AIHA in 2019, FWGBD will provide web-based resources that focus on optimal treatment and management recommendations for patients with AIHA; bolster knowledge of medical complications that patients with AIHA may have; and provide cross-functional provider team management of medical complications for patients with AIHA.

Ask-the-Experts is a resource for healthcare providers that enables medical professionals to submit a question to the Foundation's Board and Medical Advisory Committee members to receive their opinion on treatment and management of medical conditions. These researchers and educators at the top of their respective fields offer their perspectives on managing AIHA in complex cases.

*Please note that our experts are unable to provide advice for specific patients and are only available to answer questions from their colleagues.

Contact and Connect: If you are a healthcare provider and have a question for one of our experts, click here to SUBMIT YOUR QUESTION. All Ask-the-Expert users must first read and agree to the conditions of Terms of Service.
 

FWGBD has collected the best-in-class resources to guide providers in their diagnosis, treatment, and management of patients with AIHA. The resources, gathered with input from clinical experts, is intended to support providers in developing their knowledge base related to this often difficult to manage disease.

Providers, especially those outside hematology, may have knowledge and practice gaps with regard to appropriate diagnosis of AIHA, given that diagnosis is based on set of highly specific biological changes and on a positive direct Coombs test. Because the course of the disorder varies across populations and may be chronic or idiopathic, the treatment protocols may also vary, but primarily involve immune modulation with corticosteroids and other agents, including a growing focus on complement inhibitors. Realizing that AIHA can carry a significant patient burden, the resources were collected with a patient-focused lens to help evaluate the impact of various disease management options on quality of life.

Provider Resources to Support Optimal Patient Care

For most patients, the first-line treatment of warm autoimmune hemolytic anemia is corticosteroids, which can be associated with side effects that may lead to patients stopping or reducing therapy, despite the overall benefits. In addition to managing medication, successful treatment of AIHA involves open communication and support between provider and patient in order to help the patients navigate the burden of managing the disease. With proper support, patients and providers may navigate the difficult journey of ongoing management and enhance the patient’s quality of life. The following articles drawn from leading academic journals offer insight from other providers’ research to help inform care of your own patients:

General Overview

Treatment Overview

Focus on Rituximab

Genetics

Patients need easy-to-navigate resources to help them get started in understanding this complicated disease. These curated resources are a useful place to help your patients along their AIHA management journey.

These resources have been gathered in an effort to support healthcare providers, and are not intended to provide medical advice or to substitute for the judgment of healthcare professionals in the care of their patients.

We would like to thank Rigel Pharmaceuticals for their support of the development of this Resource Page, along with a few of the resources listed within.