Platelet Count Recovery After Intravenous Immunoglobulin Predicts a Favorable Outcome in Children With Immune Thrombocytopenia

Blood Res. 2016 Jun;51(2):95-101. doi: 10.5045/br.2016.51.2.95. Epub 2016 Jun 23.


Background: Childhood immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is a common acquired bleeding disorder. Even though most children recover, either spontaneously or with therapy, 10-20% of newly diagnosed ITP cases have a chronic course beyond 12 months. This study evaluated whether clinical and laboratory findings can predict the response to intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) and progression to persistent or chronic ITP in children.

Methods: During the period between March 2003 and June 2015, we retrospectively analyzed 72 children, newly diagnosed with ITP, who received IVIG treatment. Peripheral blood counts were obtained at diagnosis and at 1, 3, 6, and 12 months after IVIG treatment.

Results: After 6 months of IVIG treatment, 14 of 72 patients (19.4%) had persistent ITP, and after 12 months, 7 of 40 patients (17.5%) had chronic ITP. Age at diagnosis, gender, history of viral infection, or vaccination before disease onset were not statistically correlated with platelet recovery at 6 and 12 months. However, a platelet count recovery of ≥100×10(3)/µL at 1 and 3 months was significantly correlated with platelet recovery at 6 (P<0.001 and P<0.001, respectively) and 12 (P=0.007 and P=0.004, respectively) months.

Conclusion: This study demonstrated that early platelet count recovery, at 1 and 3 months after IVIG treatment, predicts a short disease duration and a favorable outcome in children with newly diagnosed ITP. Further investigation in a larger group of patients is warranted to validate these findings.

Keywords: Childhood; Immune thrombocytopenia; Intravenous immunoglobulin; Prognostic factor.