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Osler-Weber-Rendu Disease Medication

  • Author: Klaus-Dieter Lessnau, MD, FCCP; Chief Editor: Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD  more...
 
Updated: Jun 29, 2015
 

Medication Summary

Mild forms of Osler-Weber-Rendu disease (OWRD), also referred to as hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT), do not require treatment. When treatment is indicated, agents to be considered include iron salts, estrogen-based formulations, antifibrinolytics, and immunomodulators.

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Iron Salts

Class Summary

Iron replacement therapy provides symptomatic relief in patients with anemia.

Ferrous sulfate (Feosol, Fer-In-Sol, Fer-Iron, Iron Supplement Children's)

 

This is the mainstay of treatment for patients with iron deficiency anemia. It should be continued for about 2 months after correction of the anemia and its etiologic cause in order to replenish body stores of iron. Ferrous sulfate is the most common and cheapest form of iron used. Tablets contain 50-60 mg of iron salt. Other ferrous salts are used and may cause less intestinal discomfort because they contain a smaller dose of iron (25-50 mg). Oral solutions of ferrous iron salts are available for use in pediatric populations.

Iron dextran (Dexferrum, INFeD)

 

Iron dextran is used to treat microcytic, hypochromic anemia resulting from iron deficiency. It replenishes depleted iron stores in the bone marrow, where it is incorporated into hemoglobin. Parenteral use of iron-carbohydrate complexes has caused anaphylactic reactions, and its use should be restricted to patients with an established diagnosis of iron deficiency anemia whose anemia is not corrected with oral therapy. The required dose can be calculated (3.5 mg iron/g of hemoglobin) or obtained from tables in the Physician's Desk Reference (PDR). For intravenous use, INFeD may be diluted in 0.9% sterile saline. Do not add it to solutions containing medications or parenteral nutrition solutions. A test dose of 0.5 mL (in children, 0.25 mL) should be administered before therapy is started. This agent is available as 50 mg iron/mL (as dextran).

Iron sucrose (Venofer)

 

Iron sucrose is used to treat iron deficiency in patients in whom absorption of iron from the gastrointestinal (GI) tract is insufficient. The incidence of anaphylaxis is lower with iron sucrose than with other parenteral iron products.

Ferric gluconate (Ferrlecit)

 

Ferric gluconate replaces the iron found in hemoglobin, myoglobin, and specific enzyme systems, allowing transportation of oxygen via hemoglobin.

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Estrogens/Progestins

Class Summary

Oral contraceptives may be used to reduce bleeding. Topical preparations may be used to help strengthen the mucosa and decrease the susceptibility of the mucosa to external trauma. Before use, screening tests for pulmonary arteriovenous malformations (AVMs) should be performed because of the risk of complications involving thromboembolism.

Estrogen therapy may also be beneficial in some women with HHT and may be used to decrease the amount of bleeding. Oral contraceptives have been shown to be more effective than estrogen alone in mucosal bleeding.

Norethindrone acetate and ethinyl estradiol (Junel 1.5/30, Microgestin 1.5/30, Loestrin 21 1.5/30)

 

Norethindrone acetate−ethinyl estradiol is used to decrease mucosal bleeding. It probably works by strengthening mucosal tissues and thereby making them more resistant to trauma.

Estradiol (Estrace, Climara, Femring, Elestrin, Alora, Minivelle, Vivelle-Dot)

 

Estradiol increases synthesis of DNA, RNA, and many proteins in target tissues. Norethindrone acetate−ethinyl estradiol is an option.

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Antifibrinolytic Agents

Class Summary

Antifibrinolytic agents are used to enhance hemostasis when fibrinolysis contributes to bleeding. In view of the risk of thromboembolic events, screening for pulmonary AVMs should be performed before these agents are used.

Aminocaproic acid (Amicar)

 

Aminocaproic acid inhibits fibrinolysis through inhibition of plasminogen activator substances and, to a lesser degree, through antiplasmin activity. It is used to prevent or treat mucosal bleeding caused by bleeding disorders or trauma.

Tranexamic acid (Cyklokapron)

 

Tranexamic acid is an alternative to aminocaproic acid. It inhibits fibrinolysis by inhibiting plasminogen activators.

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Immunomodulators

Class Summary

Case reports have documented regression of OWRD lesions with the use of interferon alfa in patients who were treated for other indications.

Interferon alfa-2a (Pegasys)

 

Interferon alfa-2a is a protein product manufactured by recombinant DNA technology. The mechanism of its antitumor activity is not clearly understood; however, direct antiproliferative effects against malignant cells and modulation of host immune response may play important roles.

Peginterferon alfa-2b (PEG-Intron)

 

PEG-IFN consists of interferon alfa-2b attached to a single 12-kd polyethylene glycol (PEG) chain. It is excreted by the kidneys. PEG-IFN has sustained absorption, a slower rate of clearance, and a longer half-life than unmodified interferon, which permits more convenient once-weekly dosing and significantly improves quality of life for patients.

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Antineoplastics, Monoclonal Antibody

Class Summary

These agents may inhibit microvascular growth, which, in turn, may retard the growth of all tissues, including metastatic neoplastic growth.

Bevacizumab (Avastin)

 
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Contributor Information and Disclosures
Author

Klaus-Dieter Lessnau, MD, FCCP Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine; Medical Director, Pulmonary Physiology Laboratory; Director of Research in Pulmonary Medicine, Department of Medicine, Section of Pulmonary Medicine, Lenox Hill Hospital

Klaus-Dieter Lessnau, MD, FCCP is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Chest Physicians, American College of Physicians, American Medical Association, American Thoracic Society, Society of Critical Care Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Coauthor(s)

Raghukumar D Thirumala, MD, MPH Fellow in Pulmonary Medicine, Lenox Hill Hospital, North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System

Raghukumar D Thirumala, MD, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Chest Physicians, American College of Physicians, American Medical Association, American Thoracic Society, Society of Critical Care Medicine, Society of Hospital Medicine

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Dora E Izaguirre, MD Primary Care Physician; Researcher, Department of Medicine, Section of Pulmonary Medicine, Lenox Hill Hospital

Dora E Izaguirre, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Heart Association, American Medical Association, American Public Health Association, Colegio Medico de Honduras

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Jesus Lanza, MD Fellow in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Section of Pulmonary Medicine, Lenox Hill Hospital

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD Professor of Surgery, Program Director, Vascular Surgery Residency, Department of Surgery, Division of Vascular Surgery, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California

Vincent Lopez Rowe, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Surgeons, American Heart Association, Society for Vascular Surgery, Vascular and Endovascular Surgery Society, Society for Clinical Vascular Surgery, Pacific Coast Surgical Association, Western Vascular Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Acknowledgements

Geromanta Baleviciene, MD, Head and Professor, Department of Dermatology, Vilnius University, Medical Faculty, Lithuania

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

David F Butler, MD Professor of Dermatology, Texas A&M University College of Medicine; Chair, Department of Dermatology, Director, Dermatology Residency Training Program, Scott and White Clinic, Northside Clinic

David F Butler, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Dermatology, American Medical Association, American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, American Society for MOHS Surgery, Association of Military Dermatologists, and Phi Beta Kappa

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Richard J Cervin, MD, Consulting Staff, Department of Dermatology, Baltic-American Medical and Surgical Clinic, Lithuania

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Max J Coppes, MD, PhD, MBA President, BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver

Max J Coppes, MD, PhD, MBA, is a member of the following medical societies: Alberta Medical Association, American College of Healthcare Executives, American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, and Society for Pediatric Research

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Mark A Crowe, MD Assistant Clinical Instructor, Department of Medicine, Division of Dermatology, University of Washington School of Medicine

Mark A Crowe, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology and North American Clinical Dermatologic Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Dirk M Elston, MD Director, Department of Dermatology, Geisinger Medical Center

Dirk M Elston, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

James L Harper, MD Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Hematology/Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplantation, Associate Chairman for Education, Department of Pediatrics, University of Nebraska Medical Center; Assistant Clinical Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Creighton University School of Medicine; Director, Continuing Medical Education, Children's Memorial Hospital; Pediatric Director, Nebraska Regional Hemophilia Treatment Center

James L Harper, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for Cancer Research, American Federation for Clinical Research, American Society of Hematology, American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics, and Hemophilia and Thrombosis Research Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

James F McKinsey, MD Associate Professor of Clinical Surgery, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons; Site Chief, Department of Surgery, Division of Vascular Surgery, Columbia University Medical Center

James F McKinsey, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha and Association for Academic Surgery

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Christen M Mowad, MD Associate Professor, Department of Dermatology, Geisinger Medical Center

Christen M Mowad, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Dermatology, and Phi Beta Kappa

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Arun Panigrahi, MD Fellow in Pediatric Hematology-Oncology, University of Chicago, The Pritzker School of Medicine

Arun Panigrahi, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics and American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

William H Pearce, MD Chief, Division of Vascular Surgery, Violet and Charles Baldwin Professor of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, Northwestern University School of Medicine

William H Pearce, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Surgeons, American Heart Association, American Surgical Association, Association for Academic Surgery, Association of VA Surgeons, Central Surgical Association, New York Academy of Sciences, Society for Vascular Surgery, Society of Critical Care Medicine, Society of University Surgeons, and Western Surgical Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

James Petros, MD Associate Professor of Surgery, Program Director, Surgical Residency Program, Department of Surgery, Boston University School of Medicine

James Petros, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Medical Association, American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, Massachusetts Medical Society, and Society of Surgical Oncology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Sharada A Sarnaik, MBBS Professor of Pediatrics, Wayne State University School of Medicine; Director, Sickle Cell Center, Attending Hematologist/Oncologist, Children's Hospital of Michigan

Sharada A Sarnaik, MBBS is a member of the following medical societies: American Association of Blood Banks, American Association of University Professors, American Society of Hematology, American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, New York Academy of Sciences, and Society for Pediatric Research

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH Professor and Head, Dermatology, Professor of Pathology, Pediatrics, Medicine, and Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-New Jersey Medical School

Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Dermatology, American College of Physicians, and Sigma Xi

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Norman A Silver, MD Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada

Norman A Silver is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics and Canadian Medical Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Perry A Soriano, MD, FACS Staff Surgical Oncologist, Division of General Surgery, The Everett Clinic

Perry A Soriano, MD, FACS is a member of the following medical societies: American College of Surgeons, Massachusetts Medical Society, Pancreas Club, and Society of Surgical Oncology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Kent Stobart, MD, MSc, FRCPC Department of Pediatrics, Associate Professor, Stollery Children's Hospital

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD, Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Medscape Reference Salary Employment

Mary L Windle, PharmD Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Lawrence C Wolfe, MD Associate Chief for Hematology and Safety, Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology, Cohen Children's Medical Center

Lawrence C Wolfe, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association of Blood Banks, American Society of Hematology, Children's Oncology Group, and Eastern Society for Pediatric Research

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge valuable personal communication with Dr Robert I White Jr, medical director of Yale AVM and HHT Center, deemed an HHT Center of Excellence by the HHT Foundation International.

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Typical manifestations in patient with Osler-Weber-Rendu disease (ie, hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia) with red nodules and starry telangiectasia on cheeks.
Close-up view of typical manifestations in patient with Osler-Weber-Rendu disease (ie, hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia) with red nodules and starry telangiectasia on lips.
Close-up view of typical manifestations in patient with Osler-Weber-Rendu disease (ie, hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia) with red nodules and starry telangiectasia on cheeks.
 
 
 
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