People with mild thrombocytopenia may not need treatment. For example, they may not have symptoms or the condition clears up on its own.
Some people develop severe or long-term (chronic) thrombocytopenia. Depending on what's causing your low platelet count, treatments may include:
Mar. 31, 2015
Treating the underlying cause of thrombocytopenia. If your doctor can identify a condition or a medication that's causing your thrombocytopenia, addressing that cause may clear up your thrombocytopenia
For example, if you have heparin-induced thrombocytopenia, your doctor will direct you to stop using heparin and prescribe a different blood-thinning drug. Your thrombocytopenia may persist for a week or more despite stopping all heparin therapy.
- Blood or platelet transfusions. If your platelet level becomes too low, your doctor can replace lost blood with transfusions of packed red blood cells or platelets.
- Medications. If your condition is related to an immune system problem, your doctor may prescribe drugs to boost your platelet count. The first-choice drug may be a corticosteroid. If that doesn't work, he or she may try stronger medications to suppress your immune system.
- Surgery. If other treatment options don't help, your doctor may recommend surgery to remove your spleen (splenectomy).
- Plasma exchange. Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura can result in a medical emergency requiring plasma exchange.
- Thrombocytopenia and platelet dysfunction. The Merck Manual Professional Edition. http://www.merckmanuals.com. Accessed Feb. 20, 2015.
- George JN, et al. Approach to the adult with unexplained thrombocytopenia. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 18, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Thrombocytopenia. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
- Thrombocytopenia. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/book/export/html/4876. Accessed Feb. 23, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) (Adult and pediatric). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- E. coli. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. www.foodsafety.gov. Accessed Feb. 23, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Immune thrombocytopenia. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.