More about the combination of rituximab, cyclosporine and dexamethasone in the treatment of chronic ITP. A useful option on an environment with limited resources

Platelets. 2020 Aug 17;31(6):784-787. doi: 10.1080/09537104.2019.1678121. Epub 2019 Oct 11.


Treatment of chronic primary immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) is challenging especially with limited resources and therapy-related complications. This prospective interventional study assessed the efficacy and safety of triple therapy(TT4); a combination treatment of oral dexamethasone 40 mg for days1-4, oral cyclosporine A 2-3 mg/kg daily for 28 consecutive days and intravenous rituximab 100 mg for days7,14,21 and 28 among 40 patients with ITP who failed previous 2 or more treatment options. Our aim was to maintain platelet count ≥ 30 X 109/L without any obvious bleeding at any point in the study. Platelet counts were assessed weekly for a month then monthly for 2 years to evaluate the long-term response. TT4 was well tolerated and induced a good response with a significant increase in the mean platelet count after the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4thweek compared to the baseline. Patients with mean platelet count ≥ 30 X 109/L at the 6th month were 75% (30/40 patients). Treatment free survivals (TFS) at 12 and 24 months were 93.3% (28/30 patients) and 80% (24/30 patients) respectively. TT4 is an effective treatment option that maintained platelet count in the desired level and induced a higher sustained response, especially in an environment with limited resources.

Keywords: Bleeding; Platelet; immune thrombocytopenia; triple therapy.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Cyclosporine / pharmacology
  • Cyclosporine / therapeutic use*
  • Dexamethasone / pharmacology
  • Dexamethasone / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic / drug therapy*
  • Rituximab / pharmacology
  • Rituximab / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult


  • Rituximab
  • Dexamethasone
  • Cyclosporine