Childhood Immune thrombocytopenic Purpura

Original article


Amina M. Beayou, Nureddin A. Daghman

Department of Paediatrics; Faculty of Medicine; Garyounis Unversity

Garyounis Medical Journal Vol. 21, No.1. 2004:15-18


Background: Immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is the most common bleeding disorder in children. Though life threatening haemorrhage is rare, the question of when to treat it is still widely debated. Objective: To review local practice and determine the necessity to establish national guidelines in respect to diagnosis and management. Setting: Al-Fateh Children Hospital in Benghazi. Patients and Methods: Seventy cases, less than 15 years of age, were retrospectively studied and analysed regarding various parameters including initial manifestations, platelet counts and treatment. Results: The annual incidence of ITP, in Benghazi, is 2.8/100,000 children. Mucocutaneous and cutaneous bleeding were the initial manifestations in 53 % and 37 % of patients respectively. Initial platelet counts were less than 20 x 109/L in 59 %. Bone marrow examination was performed in 99% of the cases. Initial treatment was given to 63 % of cases, of these 55 % received steroids.
Whole blood and/or platelet concentrates were given to 13 % of patients. Conclusion: There is a tendency to treat patients according to platelet counts rather than symptoms with more frequent use of blood products in our study, together with the high frequency of bone marrow examination mandates the urgent need to set national guidelines in respect to diagnosis and treaatment of ITP.

Keywords: Children, immune, purpura, thrombocytopenia.