Evans syndrome is a very rare condition that causes low iron levels within the blood, reducing the blood's clotting ability due to a low level of blood platelets. Evans syndrome produces many symptoms, such as bleeding and a low platelet level. Other symptoms of the disorder include purpuric rashes, small red skin spots and pale skin. Fatigue, shortness of breath and a rapid heartbeat are also associated with the disorder.
The exact cause of Evans syndrome remains unknown, but it is believed to be an autoimmune disorder, which causes the immune system to attack the body's own tissue. It's not clear what causes the body to do this, but the disorder is often found in patients with autoimmune lymphoproliferative syndrome. Because the cause of the disorder remains unknown, there are no known preventative steps that can be taken to reduce the risk for the syndrome.
To properly diagnose Evans syndrome, certain tests are conducted. Common tests used to diagnose this disorder include anemia, thyroid, and adrenal gland tests. Calcium deficiency tests and sleep apnea tests are often conducted as well. Due to the rarity of the syndrome, properly diagnosing the syndrome can be delayed. Plus, the symptoms of Evans syndrome often mimic infections and other diseases.
Treatment for this syndrome involves the use of medications and doctors who specialize in the area. Treatment often involves prednisone therapy, intravenous immunoglobin and rituximab. Often, a patient will be treated by an immunologist, rheumatologist and pediatric hematologist. Even with treatment, Evans syndrome can be fatal.