Efficacy of therapeutic plasma exchange in patients with severe COVID-19: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Reviews in medical virology. 2023;:e2435
We conducted this systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the existing evidence and to quantitatively synthesise evidence on the impact of therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) on severe COVID-19 patients. This systematic review and meta-analysis protocol was prospectively registered on PROSPERO (CRD42022316331). We systemically searched six electronic databases (PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, ScienceDirect, clinicaltrial.gov, and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials) from inception until 1 June 2022. We included studies comparing patients who received TPE versus those who received the standard treatment. For risk of bias assessment, we used the Cochrane risk of bias assessment tool, the ROBINS1 tool, and the Newcastle Ottawa scale for RCTs, non-RCTs, and observational studies, respectively. Continuous data were pooled as standardized mean difference (SMD), and dichotomous data were pooled as risk ratio in the random effect model with the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI). Thirteen studies (one randomized controlled trials (RCT) and 12 non-RCTs) were included in the meta-analysis, with a total of 829 patients. There is a moderate-quality evidence from one RCT that TPE reduces the lactic dehydrogenase (LDH) levels (SMD -1.09, 95% CI [-1.59 to -0.60]), D-dimer (SMD -0.86, 95% CI [-1.34 to -0.37]), and ferritin (SMD -0.70, 95% CI [-1.18 to -0.23]), and increases the absolute lymphocyte count (SMD 0.54, 95% CI [0.07-1.01]), There is low-quality evidence from mixed-design studies that TPE was associated with lower mortality (relative risk 0.51, 95% CI [0.35-0.74]), lower IL-6 (SMD -0.91, 95% CI [-1.19 to -0.63]), and lower ferritin (SMD -0.51, 95% CI [-0.80 to -0.22]) compared to the standard control. Among severely affected COVID-19 patients, TPE might provide benefits such as decreasing the mortality rate, LDH, D-dimer, IL-6, and ferritin, in addition to increasing the higher absolute lymphocyte count. Further well-designed RCTs are needed.
Plasmapheresis to remove amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles for treating the post-COVID-19 condition
The Cochrane database of systematic reviews. 2023;7(7):Cd015775
BACKGROUND The post-COVID-19 condition (PCC) consists of a wide array of symptoms including fatigue and impaired daily living. People seek a wide variety of approaches to help them recover. A new belief, arising from a few laboratory studies, is that 'microclots' cause the symptoms of PCC. This belief has been extended outside these studies, suggesting that to recover people need plasmapheresis (an expensive process where blood is filtered outside the body). We appraised the laboratory studies, and it was clear that the term 'microclots' is incorrect to describe the phenomenon being described. The particles are amyloid and include fibrin(ogen); amyloid is not a part of a thrombus which is a mix of fibrin mesh and platelets. Initial acute COVID-19 infection is associated with clotting abnormalities; this review concerns amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in PCC only. We have reported here our appraisal of laboratory studies investigating the presence of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in PCC, and of evidence that plasmapheresis may be an effective therapy to remove amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles for treating PCC. OBJECTIVES Laboratory studies review To summarize and appraise the research reports on amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles related to PCC. Randomized controlled trials review To assess the evidence of the safety and efficacy of plasmapheresis to remove amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in individuals with PCC from randomized controlled trials. SEARCH METHODS Laboratory studies review We searched for all relevant laboratory studies up to 27 October 2022 using a comprehensive search strategy which included the search terms 'COVID', 'amyloid', 'fibrin', 'fibrinogen'. Randomized controlled trials review We searched the following databases on 21 October 2022: Cochrane COVID-19 Study Register; MEDLINE (Ovid); Embase (Ovid); and BIOSIS Previews (Web of Science). We also searched the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform and ClinicalTrials.gov for trials in progress. SELECTION CRITERIA Laboratory studies review Laboratory studies that investigate the presence of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in plasma samples from patients with PCC were eligible. This included studies with or without controls. Randomized controlled trials review Studies were eligible if they were of randomized controlled design and investigated the effectiveness or safety of plasmapheresis for removing amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles for treating PCC. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS Two review authors applied study inclusion criteria to identify eligible studies and extracted data. Laboratory studies review We assessed the risk of bias of included studies using pre-developed methods for laboratory studies. We planned to perform synthesis without meta-analysis (SWiM) as described in our protocol. Randomized controlled trials review We planned that if we identified any eligible studies, we would assess risk of bias and report results with 95% confidence intervals. The primary outcome was recovery, measured using the Post-COVID-19 Functional Status Scale (absence of symptoms related to the illness, ability to do usual daily activities, and a return to a previous state of health and mind). MAIN RESULTS Laboratory studies review We identified five laboratory studies. Amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles were identified in participants across all studies, including those with PCC, healthy individuals, and those with diabetes. The results of three studies were based on visual images of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles, which did not quantify the amount or size of the particles identified. Formal risk of bias assessment showed concerns in how the studies were conducted and reported. This means the results were insufficient to support the belief that amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles are associated with PCC, or to determine whether there is a difference in the amount or size of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in the plasma of people with PCC compared to healthy controls. Randomized controlled trials review We identified no trials meeting our inclusion criteria. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS In the absence of reliable research showing that amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles contribute to the pathophysiology of PCC, there is no rationale for plasmapheresis to remove amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in PCC. Plasmapheresis for this indication should not be used outside the context of a well-conducted randomized controlled trial.
Any person diagnosed with post‐COVID‐19 condition (PCC), (5 laboratory studies).
Plasmapheresis performed with the intention of removing amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles.
Placebo or standard of care.
No randomised controlled trials or ongoing trials where patients with PCC had undergone plasmapheresis with the intention of removing amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles were found. Five laboratory studies that assessed whether amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles were present in the blood of patients with post‐COVID‐19 condition were included. Amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles were identified in participants across the included studies, including those with PCC, healthy individuals, and those with diabetes. The results of three studies were based on visual images of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles, which did not quantify the amount or size of the particles identified. Formal risk of bias assessment showed concerns in how the studies were conducted and reported. This means the results were insufficient to support the belief that amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles are associated with PCC, or to determine whether there is a difference in the amount or size of amyloid fibrin(ogen) particles in the plasma of people with PCC compared to healthy controls.
Efficacy of therapeutic plasma exchange in severe COVID-19 disease: A meta-analysis
Vox sanguinis. 2022
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES Therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) has been used in severe COVID-19 disease to eliminate the cytokine storm. This meta-analysis aims to assess the effectiveness of TPE in reducing mortality in severe COVID-19 disease compared to standard treatment. MATERIALS AND METHODS A comprehensive literature search was performed in PubMed, the Cochrane database and the International Clinical Trial Registry Platform (ICTRP). The random-effect model was used to calculate the risk ratio and standardized mean difference (SMD) as pooled effect size for the difference in mortality and length of the intensive care unit (ICU) stay. The risk of bias and publication bias were assessed in R version 4.1.0. The certainty of the evidence was calculated using the GradePro tool. RESULTS The database identified 382 participants from six studies, including one randomized control trial. Egger's test did not detect any publication bias (p = 0.178). The random model analysis for mortality evaluated a risk ratio of 0.38 (95% CI: 0.28-0.52) with a significant reduction in the TPE group. The certainty of the evidence was moderate, with a risk ratio of 0.34 (95% CI: 0.24-0.49). Length of ICU stays between TPE versus standard care showed an SMD of 0.08 (95% CI: -0.38, 0.55) and was not significant. CONCLUSION The length of ICU stay in the TPE group was not different from standard care. However, this meta-analysis revealed a significant benefit of TPE in reducing mortality in severe COVID-19 disease compared to standard treatment.
Patients with severe COVID-19 disease (6 studies, n= 382).
Therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE).
The random model analysis for mortality evaluated a risk ratio of 0.38 (95% CI: 0.28-0.52) with a significant reduction in the TPE group. The certainty of the evidence was moderate, with a risk ratio of 0.34 (95% CI: 0.24-0.49). Length of intensive care unit stays between TPE versus standard care showed a standardized mean difference of 0.08 (95% CI: -0.38-0.55) and was not significant.
Benefits of plasma exchange on mortality in patients with COVID-19: a systematic review and meta-analysis
International Journal of Infectious Diseases : Ijid : Official Publication of the International Society for Infectious Diseases. 2022;122:332-336
OBJECTIVE The COVID-19 pandemic continues, and the death toll continues to surge. This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to determine the efficacy of therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) on mortality in patients with COVID-19. METHODS A systematic search was made of PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, and clinicaltrials.gov, without language restrictions. Controlled clinical trials on treatment of COVID-19 with TPE, compared with standard of care, were reviewed. Studies were pooled according to risk ratios (RRs) and weighted mean differences, with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). RESULTS A total of six trials (enrolling 343 participants) met the inclusion criteria. Therapeutic plasma exchange showed significant effect on mortality (RR 0.41, 95% CI 0.24 to 0.69; P = 0.0008). CONCLUSION TPE significantly reduced mortality in hospitalized patients with moderate-to-critical COVID-19. Plasma exchange therapy should be considered for patients with COVID-19.
Investigation of plasma exchange and hemoperfusion effects and complications for the treatment of patients with severe COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) disease: a systematic scoping review
Journal of Medical Virology. 2021
BACKGROUND Some previous studies suggested that the plasma exchange (PE) and hemoperfusion (HP) played a cardinal role in treatment of severe COVID-19 cases through diminishing the cytokine storm. This study aimed to assess the effects of PE and HP on cytokine storm in patients with severe COVID-19 through a systematic scoping review. METHODS Four Electronic databases [Medline (accessed from PubMed), Scopus, Science Direct, and Cochrane library] were searched systematically on February 2, 2021 using MESH terms and related keywords in English language. Considering the titles and abstracts, unrelated studies were excluded. The full texts of the remained studies were evaluated by authors, independently. Then, their findings were assessed and reported. RESULTS Total of 755 articles were obtained within the first step of searching, and 518 ones remained after removing the duplications. Through the title and abstract screening, 438 were removed. Of the rest, 59 papers were excluded. Finally, after reading the full text of the remained articles, 21 ones included in data extraction. Most of the previous reported evidence were case reports and case series. Findings were summarized in two categories; First category encompassed nine studies regarding to HP and continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT), and second category was included twelve studies about PE. CONCLUSION The results revealed that HP and PE within the cytokine storm phase would be beneficial with high probability in the treatment of severely ill COVID-19 patients. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
What Is the Role of Therapeutic Plasma Exchange as an Adjunctive Treatment in Severe COVID-19: A Systematic Review
INTRODUCTION Since the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak, multiple promising treatment modalities have been tested, however, only several of them were proven to be effective. Therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE) has been recently discussed as a possible supportive treatment for severe cases. METHODS To investigate a possible role of TPE in severe COVID-19 we used a structured systematic search strategy to retrieve all relevant publications in the field. We screened in PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, Cochrane Library and clinicaltrials.gov for data published until the 4 June 2021. RESULTS We identified 18 papers, enrolling 384 patients, 220 of whom received TPE. The number of TPE sessions ranged from 1 to 9 and the type of replacement fluid varied markedly between studies (fresh frozen plasma or 5% albumin solution, or convalescent plasma). Biochemical improvement was observed in majority of studies as far as C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6), ferritin, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), D-dimer concentrations and lymphocyte count are concerned. The improvement at a laboratory level was associated with enhancement of respiratory function. Adverse effects were limited to five episodes of transient hypotension and one femoral artery puncture and thrombophlebitis. CONCLUSIONS Although the effect of therapeutic plasma exchange on mortality remains unclarified, the procedure seems to improve various secondary end-points such as PaO(2)/FiO(2) ratio or biomarkers of inflammation. Therapeutic plasma exchange appears to be a safe treatment modality in COVID-19 patients in terms of side effects.
The association between therapeutic plasma exchange and the risk of mortality among patients critically ill with COVID-19: a meta-analysis
Background: Cytokine storm has been widely known to contribute to the development of the critical condition in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and studies had been conducted to assess the potential aspect of cytokine storm elimination by performing therapeutic plasma exchange (TPE). However, contradictory findings were observed. The objective of this study was to assess the association between TPE and the reduction of mortality of critically ill COVID-19 patients. Methods: A meta-analysis was conducted by collecting data from PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science. Data on the mortality rate of critically ill COVID-19 patients treated with TPE plus standard of care and that of patients treated with standard of care alone were analyzed using a Z test. Results: We included a total of four papers assessing the association between TPE and the risk of mortality among critically ill COVID-19 patients. Our findings suggested that critically ill COVID-19 patients treated with TPE had lower risk of mortality compared to those without TPE treatment. Conclusion: Our study has identified the potential benefits of TPE in reducing the risk of mortality among critically ill COVID-19 patients.