Is aorto-arteritis a manifestation of primary antiphospholipid antibody syndrome?

A 23 year old female presented with dyspnea on exertion and absent pulses in the left upper limb. She had prior history of two first trimester abortions and pre-eclampsia with premature delivery. A Doppler examination had revealed left subclavian and axillary artery thrombosis for which she had been given warfarin six months previously. She was admitted and investigated. Patient had low positive aCL IgG antibody, positive antibeta2gp1 antibody, negative lupus anticoagulant and negative ANA. Patient had cardiomegaly and her echocardiography showed severe aortic regurgitation, moderate mitral regurgitation and moderate pulmonary artery hypertension with poor ejection fraction with normal aortic root. A diagnosis of primary antiphospholipid antibody syndrome with valvular involvement with dilated cardiomyopathy was entertained. A CT angiogram of the aorta revealed narrowing and irregularity of the aorta and its multiple branches suggestive of type III Takayasu’s arteritis. Temporal relationship suggests development of aorto-arteritis secondary to APS but simultaneous presence of both these disorders in this patient cannot be ruled out.

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