Hamostaseologie 2022; 42(02): 117-122
DOI: 10.1055/a-1790-6156
Review Article

Acquired von Willebrand Syndrome in Children

Kirstin Sandrock-Lang
1   Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany
,
Hannah Glonnegger
1   Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany
,
Barbara Zieger
1   Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany
› Author Affiliations

Abstract

Acquired von Willebrand syndrome (AVWS) is a rare bleeding disorder caused by various underlying diseases or conditions and should be distinguished from the inherited type of von Willebrand disease. AVWS is associated with underlying diseases such as cardiovascular, autoimmune, malignant, proliferative disorders, or with mechanical circulatory support (MCS). AVWS was first reported in 1968 and most case reports describe AVWS in adults. However, AVWS can appear in pediatric patients occasionally as well. Because bleeding complications are rare in everyday life, AVWS may be underdiagnosed in pediatric patients. Therefore, the diagnosis should be suspected in a pediatric patient who is known for one of these underlying diseases or conditions and who presents with an onset of bleeding symptoms, especially before the child will undergo an invasive procedure. Here, we present an overview of the diagnostic analyses regarding AVWS and of the underlying diseases or conditions in which AVWS should be considered. Importantly, the patient's history should be investigated for bleeding symptoms (mucocutaneous or postoperative bleeding). As no single routine coagulation test can reliably confirm or exclude AVWS, the diagnosis may be challenging. Laboratory investigations should include analysis of von Willebrand factor (VWF):antigen, VWF:collagen-binding capacity, VWF:activity, and VWF multimeric analyses. For treatment, tranexamic acid, 1-desamino-8-D-arginine vasopressin, and VWF-containing concentrate can be used. AVWS disappears after the underlying disease has been successfully treated or the MCS has been explanted.



Publication History

Received: 20 December 2021

Accepted: 17 March 2022

Article published online:
29 April 2022

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