4 years ago

Increased heterogeneity of brain perfusion is an early marker of central nervous system involvement in antiphospholipid antibody carriers

Cheng-Han Wu, Yenh-Chen Hsein, Ruoh-Fang Yen, Yen-Wen Wu, Pei-Ying Hsu, Chi-Lun Ko, Ko-Jen Li, Yu-Min Kuo, Ting-Syuan Lin, Chin-Hao Chang, Song-Chou Hsieh

by Ting-Syuan Lin, Pei-Ying Hsu, Chin-Hao Chang, Chi-Lun Ko, Yu-Min Kuo, Yen-Wen Wu, Ruoh-Fang Yen, Cheng-Han Wu, Ko-Jen Li, Yenh-Chen Hsein, Song-Chou Hsieh


The non-criteria neuropsychiatric manifestations of antiphospholipid syndrome include headache, dizziness, vertigo, seizure, depression and psychosis. There were still no objective methods qualified to detect the early central nervous system involvement in non-criteria antiphospholipid syndrome. We evaluated the effectiveness of Tc-99m ECD SPECT in assessing circulatory insufficiency in the brains of patients with antiphospholipid antibodies and neuropsychiatric symptoms but without thromboembolism.

Materials and methods

Patients with a history of positive antiphospholipid antibodies and neuropsychiatric symptoms composed the case group; patients without antiphospholipid antibody served as the control group. Subjects with a history of thromboembolism or autoantibodies to extractable nuclear antigens were excluded. All patients received Tc-99m ECD SPECT studies and were classified by the number of positive antiphospholipid antibodies they carried. The heterogeneity of brain perfusion was defined as the coefficient of variation of the SPECT signals. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was applied to evaluate the differences between the groups.


Total 60 adult patients were included in this study. There were 54 patients in the case group and 6 patients in the control group. The mean age was 38.3 ± 11.5 years. There were 52 women and 8 men. There was no significant difference in the mean brain perfusion between groups (P = 0.69). However, Tc-99m ECD SPECT demonstrated significant heterogeneity of brain perfusion in relation to the number of antiphospholipid antibodies (P = 0.01).


This is the first study demonstrating that Tc-99m ECD SPECT can early detect the increased heterogeneity of brain circulation in non-criteria antiphospholipid antibody carriers.

Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0182344

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