Non-drug Treatments for Cold Agglutinin Disease
A blood transfusion is usually used only in severe cases of CAD. It is a medical procedure in which healthy blood, or specific blood components, are given to patients through the vein. In CAD, the transfusion of washed red blood cells from compatible donors serves as a temporary but sometimes necessary treatment.
Plasmapheresis is a treatment that has been used in severe cases of CAD and for those who do not respond to other treatments. It is a process in which the plasma from a patient’s blood is replaced with fresh plasma or a plasma substitute, removing harmful components such as the autoantibodies. Removing autoantibodies may help reduce damage to red blood cells and alleviate symptoms.