Membrane plasmapheresis with cryofiltration in rheumatoid arthritis1

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A technique for the on-line removal of macromolecules has been developed that involves the separation of plasma in an extracorporeal circuit by a membrane filter, its filtration in the cold through a second membrane for removal of macromolecules, and reinfusion of the treated plasma into the patient. This method was first applied in the chronic treatment of a patient with unremitting rheumatoid arthritis, and subsequently used in 5 other patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Significant improvements in clinical symptoms and biochemical factors have been noted. This technique allows the removal of macromolecules without requiring plasma replacement products when used twice weekly or at longer intervals of time.



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