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Abstract: PO1629

ANCA Vasculitis Induction Management in the COVID-19 Pandemic: Results of an International Retrospective Cohort Study

Session Information

Category: Glomerular Diseases

  • 1203 Glomerular Diseases: Clinical, Outcomes, and Trials


  • Salas, Antonio, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States
  • Geetha, Duvuru, Johns Hopkins University Department of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Group or Team Name


Induction therapy for severe ANCA-associated vasculitis (AAV) combines glucocorticoids (GC) with either rituximab (RTX) or cyclophosphamide (CYC). The coronavirus 2019 disease (COVID-19) pandemic has increased concern around using aggressive immunosuppression; whether this concern has impacted AAV management is unknown. Here, we report treatment regimens and outcomes of patients with active AAV receiving induction immunosuppression during the first wave of the pandemic.


We retrospectively studied AAV patients with new or relapsing disease receiving remission induction therapy during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic across sites in the US, UK and Europe. Primary outcome was achievement of complete remission at 6 months.


Of 191 patients with a mean age of 65 years old, 52% were female and a majority (89%) were Caucasian. Standard induction was deployed across all sites. Out of the US, UK, and European patient populations, the US used higher GC pulses leading to a higher average cumulative GC dose for remission induction (4153 mg, 2174 mg, 3408 mg, respectively, p<0.001) and had the highest proportion of patients given RTX induction therapy (64%; p=0.005). Complete remission was achieved in 90% of patients. Improvement in kidney function at 6 months was similar with all treatment regimens (6 ml/min2 increase, p=0.68). Sixteen patients were diagnosed with COVID-19 and had similar exposures to CYC and RTX. There were no differences in remission rates, ESKD or death when stratified by induction therapy type.


Induction immunotherapy practices differ across the world, but specialists continued their standard management during the COVID-19 pandemic. AAV outcomes or rates of COVID-19 infection were not influenced by different induction regimens.

Treatment differences and 6M remission among different cohorts
Treatment variablesEntire cohortUnited StatesUnited KingdomEuropeP-value
Use of pulse GCs, n (%)117 (61); n=19135 (80); n=4444 (53); n=8338 (59); n=640.013
Mean (SD) cumulative dose of IV pulse methylprednisolone in mg930 (981); n=1751658 (1243); n=43730 (755); n=74647 (733); n=58<0.001
Mean (SD) cumulative GC for remission induction in mg2962 (1841); n=1714153 (2427); n=352174 (1229); n=833408 (1642); n=53<0.001
RTX use only, n (%)84 (44); n=19128 (64); n=4428 (34); n=8328 (44); n=640.005
CYC use only, n (%)49 (26); n=1915 (11); n=4423 (28); n=8321 (33); n=640.037
RTX and CYC, n (%)49 (26); n=19110 (23); n=4428 (34); n=8311 (17); n=640.066
Remission at 6 months, n (%)160 (90); n=17837 (90); n=4164 (85); n=7559 (95); n=620.164