Rationale: Dialysis-related amyloidosis (DRA) can present rheumatic manifestations in patients on long-term hemodialysis. Typical articular symptoms with DRA involve carpal-tunnel syndrome, effusion in large joints, spondyloarthropathy, or cystic bone lesions, which are usually with non-inflammatory processes. Patient concerns: A 64-year-old man on hemodialysis for >30 years was admitted because of intermittent fever, polyarthritis, and elevated serum C-reactive protein (CRP) level, which was continuous for 2 years. Several antibiotics were ineffective for 3 months before his admission. On physical examination, joint swelling was observed at bilateral wrists, knees, ankles, and hip joints. Laboratory tests revealed elevation of serum inflammatory markers and β2-microglobulin (β2-MG). Synovial fluid showed predominant infiltration of polymorphonuclear leukocytes and the increase of β2-MG level. Diagnosis: Significant deposition of β2-MG with inflammatory cell infiltration was found in biopsied samples from synovium, skin, and ileum. Interventions: We decided to switch to the hemodialysis column with membrane that can effectively absorb β2-MG in circulation. Outcomes: The relief of symptoms and a decrease of CRP level by changing the membrane lead to the final diagnosis of DRA. Lessons: Our case demonstrates that DRA arthropathy can be inflammatory and destructive, and also develop systemic inflammatory signs and symptoms. In such cases, aggressive absorption of β2-MG in circulation might help the amelioration of symptoms.
- dialysis-related amyloidosis
- fever of unknown origin
- long-term hemodialysis
- β2-microglobulin modified by advanced glycation end products
ASJC Scopus subject areas