What is it?

Immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) or idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura is a condition in which there are low levels of platelets in the blood, causing easy bruising. People who suffer from ITP usually have purpura on their skin. Purpura is a condition of red or purple discolored spots on the skin. The spots are caused by bleeding underneath the skin. This condition is caused when the immune system mistakens the thrombocyte to foreign body, therefore attacking and destroying it. It could appear firstly after an infection, and in adults it may be triggered by HIV, hepatitis, and H. pylori. This condition could become chronic.

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Signs & symptoms

ITP symptoms include purpura which manifests as red or purple-colored spots on the skin or inside the mouth, that do not blanch on applying pressure. They measure 3–10 mm. Other symptoms may include easy or excessive bleeding, bleeding from the gums or nose, blood in urine or stool and a heavy menstrual flow.


Diagnosis is based upon finding in medical history, physical examination and low platelet count on blood tests.


Treatment depends on the severity of the symptoms and may include only monitoring while others will get steroids, immunoglobulins, and drugs that increase platelet production. In severe cases, a splenectomy may be done to eliminate the source of platelet destruction.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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