Prophylaxis of the antiphospholipid syndrome: a consensus report

Lupus. 2003;12(7):499-503. doi: 10.1191/0961203303lu388oa.


Hypothetical circumstances that may require prophylaxis for a potential antiphospholipid syndrome (primary prophylaxis), or in some instances when there already had been some manifestations ofthe syndrome (secondary prophylaxis), were presented to a panel of experts for their consideration on potential prophylactic intervention. These were subsequently presented to the participants in the First International Consensus on Treatment of the Antiphospholipid Syndrome. In most instances there was consensus in adding low dose aspirin, an exception being aspirin allergy when other antiaggregants could be used in nonpregnant subjects. General measures to prevent thrombosis and other vasoprotective actions should also be provided. Higher risk of fetal loss or thrombosis called for anticoagulation with coumadin in nonpregnant subjects or subcutaneous low molecular weight heparin in pregnant ones. When indicated, prophylaxis of the antiphospholipid syndrome should be provided in systemic lupus erythematosus patients who are being treated for their disease. In no instance should corticosteroids or immunosuppresants be given as prophylactic of an antiphospholipid syndrome.

Publication types

  • Consensus Development Conference
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anticoagulants / therapeutic use*
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome / complications*
  • Antiphospholipid Syndrome / prevention & control
  • Aspirin / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / complications
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / drug therapy
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Hematologic / prevention & control
  • Thrombosis / etiology
  • Thrombosis / prevention & control*


  • Anticoagulants
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors
  • Aspirin