By definition, platelet counts drop in idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) and successful treatment of the condition is measured by an increasing platelet count.
Treatment of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura
The first-line treatment is the use of corticosteroids, which is successful in about two-thirds of patients and particularly successful in children.
In idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, administration of intravenous IgG and the use of plasmapheresis will also temporarily increase platelet counts and are used in cases of bleeding due to a severely reduced platelet count (< 15,000/microL).
For refractory cases, splenectomy can be considered. If platelet counts are still decreased several months after splenectomy, a blood smear for Howell-Jolly bodies should be obtained.
If there is an absence of Howell-Jolly bodies, a sulfur colloid scan for accessory spleen should be performed.
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