Co-presentation with both ANCA and anti-GBM antibodies is thought to be relatively rare. Current studies of such 'double-positive' cases report small numbers and variable outcomes. To study this further we retrospectively analyzed clinical features and long-term outcomes of a large cohort of 568 contemporary patients with ANCA-associated vasculitis, 41 patients with anti-GBM disease, and 37 double-positive patients with ANCA and anti-GBM disease from four European centers. Double-positive patients shared characteristics of ANCA-associated vasculitis (AAV), such as older age distribution and longer symptom duration before diagnosis, and features of anti-GBM disease, such as severe renal disease and high frequency of lung hemorrhage at presentation. Despite having more evidence of chronic injury on renal biopsy compared to patients with anti-GBM disease, double-positive patients had a greater tendency to recover from being dialysis-dependent after treatment and had intermediate long-term renal survival compared to the single-positive patients. However, overall patient survival was similar in all three groups. Predictors of poor patient survival included advanced age, severe renal failure, and lung hemorrhage at presentation. No single-positive anti-GBM patients experienced disease relapse, whereas approximately half of surviving patients with AAV and double-positive patients had recurrent disease during a median follow-up of 4.8 years. Thus, double-positive patients have a truly hybrid disease phenotype, requiring aggressive early treatment for anti-GBM disease, and careful long-term follow-up and consideration for maintenance immunosuppression for AAV. Since double-positivity appears common, further work is required to define the underlying mechanisms of this association and define optimum treatment strategies.
Keywords: Goodpasture syndrome; anti-GBM disease; anti–neutrophil cytoplasm antibody; glomerulonephritis; vasculitis.
Copyright © 2017 International Society of Nephrology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.