Clinical Rheumatology

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 379–384 | Cite as

Stroke and antiphospholipid syndrome—antiphospholipid antibodies are a risk factor for an ischemic cerebrovascular event

  • Nataša GašperšičEmail author
  • Marjan Zaletel
  • Jan Kobal
  • Polona Žigon
  • Saša Čučnik
  • Snežna Sodin Šemrl
  • Matija Tomšič
  • Aleš Ambrožič
Original Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Rheumatology in Slovenia: Clinical practice and translational research


Testing for antiphospholipid antibodies could be an important part in determining the cause of a cerebrovascular event (CVE). Currently, it is also unknown whether antiphospholipid antibodies represent a risk factor for the development of a CVE and whether the selected therapy options are efficacious. So, this study aimed at (1) determining the frequency of patients experiencing a CVE and fulfilling the laboratory criterion for an antiphospholipid syndrome (APS), (2) investigating whether the persistent presence of antiphospholipid antibodies represented a risk factor for a CVE, and (3) focusing on the efficacy of the selected treatment strategy in the first year after the CVE. Eighty-nine patients with an acute CVE were prospectively followed for 1 year. At least two sera from each were tested for lupus anticoagulants, anticardiolipin, anti-β2-glycoprotein I, anti-phosphatidylserine/prothrombin and anti-annexin V antibodies. Twenty out of eighty-nine (22%) of CVE patients fulfilled the criteria for APS (17/20 for definitive and 3 for probable APS). There was a significant association between persistently present antiphospholipid antibodies and the CVE (OR, 4.62). No statistically significant difference was found in the CVE recurrence rate between APS-CVE and non-APS-CVE patients being treated mainly with acetyl salicylic acid. Antiphospholipid antibodies represent an independent risk factor for a CVE. In the first year after the CVE, antiplatelet therapy seemed to be sufficient in secondary CVE thromboprophylaxis in most APS patients.


Antiphospholipid antibody Risk Stroke Treatment 


Funding information

The study was supported by the Slovenian Research Agency (ARRS) for the National Research Programme (P3-0314).

Compliance with ethical standards



Ethics approval

The study was approved by the Slovene National Medical Ethics Committee (163/02/09).


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Copyright information

© International League of Associations for Rheumatology (ILAR) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nataša Gašperšič
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marjan Zaletel
    • 2
  • Jan Kobal
    • 2
  • Polona Žigon
    • 1
  • Saša Čučnik
    • 1
    • 3
  • Snežna Sodin Šemrl
    • 1
    • 4
  • Matija Tomšič
    • 1
    • 5
  • Aleš Ambrožič
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RheumatologyUniversity Medical Centre LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  2. 2.Department of NeurologyUniversity Medical Centre LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  3. 3.Faculty of PharmacyUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia
  4. 4.Faculty of Mathematics, Natural Sciences and Information TechnologiesUniversity of PrimorskaKoperSlovenia
  5. 5.Faculty of MedicineUniversity of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia

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