Oral Healthcare and Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura: Early Recognition, Dental Management and Case Report

Dent J (Basel). 2021 Sep 12;9(9):108. doi: 10.3390/dj9090108.


A 47-year-old Caucasian man, in good general, oral and periodontal health, presented with a non-bleeding bluish lesion on the back of his tongue, presumably due to an ecchymotic area of traumatic origin which was left untreated. The day after, other ecchymotic-type lesions on the mucous membranes of the cheeks and the upper lip, a bleeding lesion at the apex of the tongue and gingivorrhagia, along with petechiae on the back, scalp, lower limbs and feet, occurred, with rapid clinical deterioration, requiring immediate hospitalization. Oral, dermatological, and hematological evaluations lead to idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) diagnosis and hydrocortisone prescription, with a complete recovery in the next few days.The presented case of ITP, with early intra-oral manifestations, aimed both to emphasize the role of oral healthcare workers in theearly recognition of ITP, which may be especially relevant for those cases with extremely fast platelet depletion, high risk of internal bleeding and consequent potentially fatal complications, and in the differential diagnosis of the diseasethat may be aided by the diagnostic protocol described, and to provide dentists with recommendations on oral care management of cases of ITP, both in dental and multi-disciplinary settings.

Keywords: gingivorrhagia; idiopathic thrombocytopenia; oral bleeding; oral healthcare; purpura.

Publication types

  • Case Reports