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Autoimmune Diseases
Volume 2012, Article ID 301274, 6 pages
Review Article

Neonatal Lupus Erythematosus

1Department of Pediatrics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, 6/F, Clinical Sciences Building, Shatin, Hong Kong
2Department of Pediatrics, Alberta Children’s Hospital, The University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada T2N 1N4

Received 4 June 2012; Revised 29 July 2012; Accepted 2 August 2012

Academic Editor: Hiroshi Okamoto

Copyright © 2012 Kam Lun Hon and Alexander K. C. Leung. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Neonatal lupus erythematosus (NLE) refers to a clinical spectrum of cutaneous, cardiac, and systemic abnormalities observed in newborn infants whose mothers have autoantibodies against Ro/SSA and La/SSB. The condition is rare and usually benign and self-limited but sometimes may be associated with serious sequelae. We review the pathophysiology, clinical features, and management of infants with this condition. Neonates with NLE should be managed at a tertiary care center. Multidisciplinary team involvement may also be indicated. In mothers with anti-Ro/SSA and/or anti-La/SSB antibodies and infants with congenital heart block, the risk of recurrence in subsequent offspring is 17–25%. Therefore, careful monitoring of subsequent pregnancies with serial ultrasonography and echocardiography is essential.