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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(3), 6557-6570; doi:10.3390/ijms16036557

Amniotic Fluid Embolism Pathophysiology Suggests the New Diagnostic Armamentarium: β-Tryptase and Complement Fractions C3-C4 Are the Indispensable Working Tools

1
Department of Anatomical, Histological, Forensic and Orthopaedic Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Viale Regina Elena 336, 00161 Rome, Italy
2
Neuromed, Istituto Mediterraneo Neurologico (IRCCS), Via Atinense 18, Pozzilli, 86077 Isernia, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Robert J. Norman
Received: 26 December 2014 / Revised: 3 March 2015 / Accepted: 10 March 2015 / Published: 23 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Pathology, Diagnostics, and Therapeutics)
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Abstract

Amniotic fluid embolism (AFE) is an uncommon obstetric condition involving pregnant women during labor or in the initial stages after delivery. Its incidence is estimated to be around 5.5 cases per 100,000 deliveries. Therefore, this paper investigated the pathophysiological mechanism, which underlies AFE, in order to evaluate the role of immune response in the development of this still enigmatic clinical entity. The following databases (from 1956 to September 2014) Medline, Cochrane Central, Scopus, Web of Science and Science Direct were used, searching the following key words: AFE, pathophysiology, immune/inflammatory response, complement and anaphylaxis. The main key word “AFE” was searched singularly and associated individually to each of the other keywords. Of the 146 sources found, only 19 were considered appropriate for the purpose of this paper. The clinical course is characterized by a rapid onset of symptoms, which include: acute hypotension and/or cardiac arrest, acute hypoxia (with dyspnoea, cyanosis and/or respiratory arrest), coagulopathies (disseminated intravascular coagulation and/or severe hemorrhage), coma and seizures. The pathology still determines a significant morbidity and mortality and potential permanent neurological sequelae for surviving patients. At this moment, numerous aspects involving the pathophysiology and clinical development are still not understood and several hypotheses have been formulated, in particular the possible role of anaphylaxis and complement. Moreover, the detection of serum tryptase and complement components and the evaluation of fetal antigens can explain several aspects of immune response. View Full-Text
Keywords: amniotic fluid embolism; immune response; mast cell degranulation; complement; immunohistochemistry amniotic fluid embolism; immune response; mast cell degranulation; complement; immunohistochemistry
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MDPI and ACS Style

Busardò, F.P.; Frati, P.; Zaami, S.; Fineschi, V. Amniotic Fluid Embolism Pathophysiology Suggests the New Diagnostic Armamentarium: β-Tryptase and Complement Fractions C3-C4 Are the Indispensable Working Tools. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16, 6557-6570.

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