This review on hereditary angioedema (HAE) focuses on special topics regarding HAE in female patients. HAE is a bradykinin-mediated disorder, and the role of hormonal regulation of disease expression will be discussed focusing on the effect of estrogen on disease mechanism. The impact
of exogenous estrogen on symptom exacerbation leads to special consideration regarding choice of contraceptives and safety of hormone replacement therapy. The effects of pregnancy and childbirth will be examined on the course of disease control. Unique considerations regarding therapeutic
management for female HAE patients will be addressed, including the role of C1 inhibitor (C1-INH), ecallantide, and icatibant. Finally, this review will provide an overview of the more recently characterized HAE with normal C1-INH (HAE type III) that predominantly affects women and is in some
cases associated with factor XII gene mutations.
Section of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, Department of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles–David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California, USA
Publication date: January 1, 2013
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