What is Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP)?
Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP) is a blood disorder that causes low platelet levels. The low platelet levels can cause easy and excessive bleeding, bruising, and easily visible petechiae on the skin. ITP occurs in both children and adults and can be either acute or chronic, with the former being more prevalent.
How is ITP treated?
The treatment for ITP depends on the symptoms, age of the patient, and platelet count. In some patients, ITP resolves on its own without any treatment. However, for symptomatic patients, treatment can include medications such as corticosteroids, IVIG, and others. If medication is not effective and the ITP is severe, a splenectomy may be performed. While successful in restoring platelet levels for many patients, this option permanently increases the susceptibility to infection.
What causes ITP?
Although definitive causes for Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura have not been identified, ITP often begins after vaccination or shortly after a viral illness. The Vaccine Injury Table supports an association with vaccination when thrombocytopenic purpura occurs within 7-30 days of receiving a measles-containing vaccine, and it is still possible to file a successful claim if ITP occurs following other vaccinations as well.