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Thrombocytopenia: Causes, Symptoms, & Treatment

Updated on 21 October 2022

Platelets are colourless blood cells that help in the blood clotting process. When the platelet levels are low in the blood, the medical condition is known as Thrombocytopenia, and it is a very serious medical problem. Patients with this disorder don't have enough platelets to form a blood clot to stop the bleeding. If a person bruises, stopping the excessive bleeding can be really hard. However, this condition can be treated once the doctor knows the underlying cause. Thrombocytopenia can affect people of all ages, genders, and races.

Causes of Thrombocytopenia

In rare scenarios, this condition is inherited or genetic. But commonly, certain infections like Malaria, Dengi, sepsis, nutritional deficiency of folate, vitamin B12, and autoimmune disorders cause thrombocytopenia. Have a look at some of the probable causes of Thrombocytopenia.  

  • Alcohol abuse
  • Autoimmune diseases that cause ITP (Immune Thrombocytopenia)
  • Bone marrow disorders like aplastic anaemia, leukaemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, etc.
  • Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, etc.
  • Excessive exposure to toxic chemicals like benzene, pesticides, and arsenic.
  • Antibacterial, medications for seizures, heart problems, anticoagulants, etc.
  • Contracting a virus like Hepatitis C, HIV, EBV, CMV, etc.

Symptoms of Thrombocytopenia

People with a low platelet count don't show many symptoms. Majorly the first sign is a cut or a nosebleed that won't stop bleeding. Other symptoms might include the following,

  • Bleeding gums
  • Blood in stool
  • Blood in vomiting
  • Heavy menstrual flow
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Purple/Red/ Brown bruises on the skin
  • Tiny Red or Purple dots lower part of the legs. They might resemble a rash.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, then it is best to consult a doctor.

How is Thrombocytopenia Treated?

If you have a low platelet count and it is not causing any issues, then you might not need any treatment. But if the bleeding is excessive or you are experiencing any other symptoms mentioned in the above section, then you might need urgent treatment. Here is the list of treatments a doctor can employ,

  • Platelet Transfusion

This treatment is used to temporarily increase the platelet count in the blood. Platelets are transfused into the bloodstream if the count is extremely low.

  • Splenectomy

In this, the spleen is removed. Enlarged spleens can be caused by many conditions. They prevent the blood cells from circulating in the bloodstream, thereby causing low platelet count. With this treatment, the spleen is removed, which increases the platelet count in the blood.

  • Steroids

If the condition is autoimmune, patients are given steroids. They prevent the destruction of platelet in the blood. The dosage given is up to the doctor based on how worse the patient's condition is.

Precautions To Be Taken For Those Who Has Thrombocytopenia

Those who are having low platelet count should adhere to the following points,

  • Avoid medicines without a doctor's advice which cause blood thinning and increase the risk of bleeding (Ibuprofen, Aspirin, etc.).
  • Take care while playing sports that can cause severe injuries.
  • Minimize contact with chemicals.
  • Take care while shaving, brushing your teeth, and blowing your nose.
  • Limit the intake of alcohol.  

It is essential to talk to your doctor from the best hospital for treating thrombocytopenia in Raipur and discuss the possible treatment options. Based on your condition, the doctor might provide you with certain medications.

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