What is ITP Blood Disorder?

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Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is a bleeding disorder that occurs under the skin's surface. The bleeding disorder may be hard to detect, but it may reveal itself during infections such as a cold or the flu and pregnancy.

Identification

  • ITP is a disorder caused by a decrease in the number of platelets, which help control blood flow. Patients with an abnormal platelet decrease may show signs of purple-colored skin bruises and internal bleeding.

Features

  • A typical platelet count ranges from 150,000 to 450,000; ITP patients demonstrate blood counts under 100,000. Nosebleeds are another common symptom of individuals experiencing ITP.

Treatments

  • Physician treatment may be based on diagnostic testing, medical history and patient preference. Treatments can include spleen removal, steroids or infection control.

Preventing Disease Complications

  • ITP patients can monitor abnormal bleeding, such as nosebleeds, and wear protective head gear. Monitoring medications such as aspirin is advised because patients are prone to excessive bleeding.

Warning

  • This bleeding disorder can occur in both children and adults. Children are more likely to develop the acute (short-term) type, while adults develop a chronic (long-term) form of ITP.

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