What is the role of cold agglutinin titers measurement in the workup of cold agglutinin disease?

Updated: Aug 28, 2018
  • Author: Salman Abdullah Aljubran, MD; Chief Editor: Michael A Kaliner, MD  more...
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Answer

With the cold agglutinin titer, a titer of greater than 1:64 is considered abnormal when blood is tested at 4°C. Obtain the cold agglutinin titers also at 30°C and 37°C, when needed. Testing at temperatures higher than 4°C is extremely valuable, particularly if the patient is to undergo hypothermia for surgery.

Cold agglutinin disease is usually associated with very high cold agglutinin titers of greater than 1:10,000 at 4°C, with a thermal amplitude of up to 30-32°C. The addition of bovine serum albumin (BSA) while testing for the cold agglutinin titer and thermal amplitude results in a better correlation with clinical hemolytic anemia than does obtaining data in the absence of BSA, using saline-suspended cells. [8]


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