Platelets (Plts) aid our bodies in blood clotting and help prevent bleeding. Thrombocytopenia is when the platelet count is below 100,000. A normal platelet count is 160,000 – 370,000.
Signs and Symptoms
Symptoms may not appear unless the platelet count is very low (i.e. 1ess than 10,000 – 20,000). They may include:
Bleeding, oozing gums
Petechiae (little red spots under the skin - like freckles)
Black tarry stools
Blood in urine (cloudy to pink to red)
What to Do
Use a soft toothbrush and avoid flossing
Avoid using a blade when shaving
Blow your nose very gently
Use saline nasal spray or petroleum jelly to keep nostrils moist
Avoid constipation. Use stool softeners, eat a high fiber diet. Drink plenty of fluids.
Avoid aspirin and aspirin-containing products
Avoid non-steroidal inflammatory drugs, i.e., ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®) and naproxen (Aleve®).
Use acetaminophen (Tylenol®) for minor pain, as this does not affect how your platelets work
Avoid activities that carry risk of injury (i.e. contact sports)
Apply pressure to blood drawing sites for 5 minutes after blood is drawn
Consult with your doctor or nurse on the safety of sexual activity as it relates to your blood counts
Use a water-soluble lubricant during sexual intercourse (K-Y Jelly®) to help reduce trauma to the vaginal tissues
Platelet (blood) transfusions may be given if symptoms occur and/or platelet count is less than 10,000 – 20,000.
Please feel free to call Dr. from a.m. to p.m. at or you can reach the clinic nurses at ____________________ from a.m. to p.m. if you have questions or concerns.