Up-to-date Information on
Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia



The state-of-the-art glossary for Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia.

Cold agglutinin disease (CAD)

Cold agglutinin disease (CAD) in the glossary for Waldenström's macroglobulinemia

A rare hematological condition in which the immune system destroys erythrocytes.

Cold agglutinin disease (CAD) is an immune disorder characterized by cold sensitive antibodies, usually IgM that agglutinate erythrocytes at very low temperatures, for example 4ºC.1 Cooling of the blood during passage through peripheral vessels allows IgM to bind to erythrocytes, causing agglutination and the initiation of the complement cascade ultimately leading to hemolysis of the red blood cells. CAD has traditionally been​ classified as a primary type regarded unrelated to underlying​ conditions and a secondary type associated with malignant disease, most often lymphoma. Based on recent findings, it has become clear that even ‘primary’ CAD is closely related to lymphoproliferative disorders including Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia.2

Glossary overview


1.Segen JC. McGraw-Hill concise dictionary of modern medicine. 2002.The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., New York. Available from; https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/. Accessed November 12th, 2021.
2.Berentsen S. Cold Agglutinin–Mediated Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia in Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia. Clinical Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009: 9(1);110-112.
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