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Multicenter Study
, 92 (8), 704-7

Does Treatment of Newly Diagnosed Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura Reduce Morbidity?

Multicenter Study

Does Treatment of Newly Diagnosed Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura Reduce Morbidity?

Iris Treutiger et al. Arch Dis Child.


Aim: To explore whether early treatment of children with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) with immunoglobulin and/or corticosteroids reduces subsequent morbidity.

Methods: Centres participating in a Nordic ITP study were divided according to whether they had treated more than 2/3, from 1/3 to 2/3, or less than 1/3 children within 14 days of diagnosis. The course of disease from 15 days to 6 months after diagnosis was compared for children managed at the three centre categories. The comparison was restricted to children in whom at least one platelet count <20x10(9)/l was measured, numbering 156, 143 and 84 in the three different categories, respectively.

Results: The three groups of children were clinically similar but were managed with initial treatment rates of 89%, 57% and 14%, respectively. By day 15, the platelet count had stabilised to >20x10(9)/l in 67%, 67% and 52% (p<0.05) and to >150x10(9)/l in 38%, 29% and 29% (p<0.20). At 1 month after diagnosis there was no difference in recovery rates. Chronic ITP developed in 27%, 22% and 25% in the three groups. During follow-up, one or more disease-related events occurred in 23%, 22% and 19%, with no difference in the average numbers of episodes with mucosal bleeding. Treatment courses were administered to 19%, 13% and 11%, respectively.

Conclusion: Active treatment policies accelerated platelet recovery in children with short-lasting ITP but did not avert the development of chronic ITP and did not cause a reduction in morbidity during follow-up.

Conflict of interest statement

Competing interests: None.

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