Background - Plasma-derived von Willebrand factor (VWF) (Wilfactin®, LFB, France) was developed for prophylaxis and treatment of haemorrhages in both adults and adolescents with von Willebrand disease (VWD). Replacement therapy in paediatric patients is a key element of the clinical trial programme.
Material and methods - Patients aged <6 years with severe VWD were enrolled in a multinational, open-label study to evaluate the in vivo recovery for Wilfactin®, and its efficacy in preventing and treating bleeding episodes and during surgery. Overall haemostatic efficacy based on a 4-point scale was assessed by investigators. The treatment period ≥18 months investigated the long-term safety.
Results - Nine patients, including 7 with type 3 VWD were exposed to treatment with Wilfactin® for up to 4.2 years. Recovery of VWF in 7 patients (n=5 type 3, n=1 type 2, n=1 type 1) was 1.8±0.4 IU/dL per IU/kg. Of the 62 bleeds, 89% were controlled with one (73%) or two (16%) infusions of Wilfactin®. The median dose per infusion was 54 IU/kg. A factor VIII dose was co-administered in 1.6% of bleeds. "Excellent"/"Good" haemostatic efficacy was achieved in 90.3% of episodes. Six patients underwent 11 minor surgical interventions. Treatment duration was 1 day (range: 1-6 days) with a dose administered 30-60 minutes before procedure of 56 IU/kg (range: 41-106 IU/kg). Haemostasis was rated as "Excellent" in all surgeries. During 4-year prophylactic treatment in one patient, breakthrough bleeds were reported in 2.2% of infusions. No VWF inhibitors, thromboembolic events or allergic/anaphylactic-type reactions were observed following a total exposure of 770 days.
Discussion - The results show that Wilfactin® provides a safe and effective treatment in patients <6 years of age with severe VWD.
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