When a well child comes to Accident and Emergency (A & E) with a history of sudden onset bruising, purpura and petechiae, and is found to have an isolated severe thrombocytopenia, the diagnosis is usually obvious: acute Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP). But, could something more sinister be going on? Is ITP the correct diagnosis?
This article outlines the features that should worry a clinician, making them suspicious of an alternative diagnosis. Aware of the possible differential diagnoses the clinician can appropriately investigate and manage the child with ITP, and know when to refer to a paediatric haematologist for specialist help.
- immune thrombocytopenic purpura