Objective: To determine the frequency of thrombocytopenia in malarial parasite (MP) positive patients.
Study design: A cross-sectional study.
Place and duration of study: Medical Unit-III, Ward-7, JPMC, Karachi, from June to October 2006.
Methodology: One hundred twenty four MP positive cases were included in the study. Infections with both Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax species were included. Complete blood picture with platelet count was obtained in all patients. Thrombocytopenia was defined as platelets count of < 150,000/cmm.
Results: Among 124 patients of MP positive, 100 (80.6%) were found to have thrombocytopenia. Over all 64 patients had Plasmodium falciparum, while 60 patients were having Plasmodium vivax infection. The frequency of thrombocytopenia was 71.87% (n=46) in falciparum and 93.33% (n=56) in vivax infection.
Conclusion: Thrombocytopenia was a common haematological finding in patients with Plasmodium infection particularly marked in vivax species infection.