Objective: The effect of pulse cyclophosphamide treatment was retrospectively assessed in 25 systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients with central nervous system involvement. All patients who tested positive for anti-phospholipid antibodies and/or lupus anticoagulant were excluded.
Results: Low-dose intravenous cyclophosphamide pulses (500 mg) were administered weekly in all patients. Twenty-four out of 25 patients attained a good response (after a mean of 11 days). Cyclophosphamide was well tolerated in all patients with only minor side effects. None of the patients experienced ovarian failure, cystitis or herpes zoster.
Conclusions: Weekly low-dose cyclophosphamide pulses appear to be safe and effective for the management of neuropsychiatric manifestations in SLE patients without antiphospholipid antibodies.