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Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1990 Oct;163(4 Pt 1):1147-50.

Low fetal risks in pregnancies associated with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, McMaster University Medical Centre, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura and pregnancy are commonly associated. In this article we describe our experience in the management of 61 infants born to 50 mothers with confirmed idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura. The focus was the neonatal cord platelet count, the parameter of greatest interest to obstetricians. None of the 61 infants had morbidity or mortality as a consequence of the thrombocytopenia. Only three of 61 infants (4.9%) had a cord platelet count that was less than 50 x 10(9) per liter. Although 66% of the infants had a further fall in the platelet count after birth, in all the thrombocytopenia could readily be corrected. Neither maternal platelet count, maternal treatment with corticosteroids, maternal platelet-associated immunoglobulin G level, nor maternal splenectomy could be used to predict neonatal thrombocytopenia. Fetal scalp platelet sampling was likely to lead to an erroneous decision. The rareness of a poor neonatal outcome raises the question of whether obstetric interventions are justified for every pregnant patient with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura.

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