What causes acquired von Willebrand disease (vWD)?

Updated: Dec 30, 2019
  • Author: Eleanor S Pollak, MD; Chief Editor: Srikanth Nagalla, MBBS, MS, FACP  more...
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Answer

Acquired vWD is a rare disorder that results from the development of antibodies to vWF. Acquired vWD may arise from a variety of mechanisms—including lymphoproliferative, cardiovascular, and myeloproliferative diseases [6] —and typically resolves with treatment of the cause. [3]

For example, acquired vWD may occur in patients with hypothyroidism; these cases are typically mild to moderate and improve with restoration of euthyroidism. [7]  Acquired vWD has also been reported as a cause of postoperative bleeding in patients with congenital heart disease, especially those with complex defects and Eisenmenger syndrome. [8]  The narrowed pulmonary vasculature in idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension has also been identified as a cause of acquired vWD. [9]  Acquired vWD has been reported in patients with active systemic lupus erythematosus. [10]


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