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What is ITP?
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Main > Specialty Areas > Hematology >
ITP (idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, immune thrombocytopenic purpura)

Symptoms and Diagnosis

For most people their first introduction to ITP occurs when they start having unusually long nose bleeds, or when their gums start bleeding from normal dental care, or when a minor cut doesn't stop bleeding. Some people notice bruises on their arms and legs and don't remember hitting anything. Some people also report feeling excessively tired or depressed.

Useful Tip:
Applying pork fat usually helps stop nose bleeds caused by blood not clotting.

Another very common symptom is many small red or purple dots, usually found on lower legs or in the mouth. These dots are called petechiae, they are tiny and look like needle pricks, they do not itch and neither are they inflamed or raised.

A diagnosis is usually done on a basis of a routine blood test. A platelet count in a healthy person ranges from 150,000 to 400,000 cu/ml. Anything lower than 150,000 may be caused by ITP. A skilled hematologist (doctor who specializes in blood diseases) would make a diagnosis after ruling out all other conditions that are known to lower platelet count.

‹‹ What is ITP? I've been diagnosed ››

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Random Useful Tip:
Epinephrine shot
If you are known to have a severe anaphylactic reaction, carry an epinephrine (adrenaline) shot with you at all times. Pay attention to expiration date and replace it regularly: upon expiration, it loses its effectiveness.

Random Drug Info:
Acyclovir
Acyclovir is a medication that is used to treat herpes infections of the skin, lips and genitals, chicken pox and shingles. It comes in the form of ointments, tablets, capsules or liquids. It relieves pain and itchiness and promotes healing; however, it does not cure the condition. Possible (but not common) side effects include headaches, upset stomach, vomiting and diarrhea. Severe side effects, such as severe rash or itching, blood in the urine, stomach pain or fever are even less common, but require prompt medical attention.



 
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