Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood – Do you tend to bruise easily and have trouble stopping cuts or wounds from bleeding? Or maybe you get frequent nosebleeds or bloody gums? If so, there is a chance that you have a low platelet count.

A low platelet count – a condition called “thrombocytopenia” – is a problem with normal blood clotting and bruising resulting from low levels of platelets,  colorless blood cells produced by the bone marrow. Platelets are responsible for forming blood clots in arteries/veins and stopping bleeding. A low platelet count puts someone at greater risk of internal bleeding or other blood clotting and blood vessel-related problems – and unfortunately, it can sometimes really affect quality of life.

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

Idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura (ITP) is a type of low platelet count caused by an autoimmune disease that affects how platelets are produced and used in the body. Autoimmune disorders, including arthritis, leukemia, and lymphoma, can cause ITP, and factors such as drug use and exposure to toxins can also reduce the number of platelets in the blood. Not every patient with a low platelet count has a serious autoimmune disorder. Some cases of mild thrombocytopenia are caused by common lifestyle factors, can be treated fairly easily, and even cause no noticeable signs and symptoms.

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Thrombocytopenia varies in terms of the symptoms it causes and how it is treated, depending on how severely a person’s platelet count has dropped. Some people may need to simply monitor their symptoms closely and see their doctors periodically, but others need to stay in the hospital occasionally for emergency care and strictly avoid anything that could potentially cause bleeding.

As you will learn, there are many different causes of low platelets, which can make treating this condition somewhat confusing. But luckily, most people with mild to moderately low platelets can get their numbers back up fairly easily and live normal, healthy lives—all by making some dietary and lifestyle changes.

If you notice that you bruise easily and bleed for a long time even after a minor cut, talk to your doctor to check your platelet count. A low platelet count can be diagnosed using several tests: a complete blood count, which measures the levels of all the blood cells/platelets in your blood; a blood smear, which looks at the actual shape of your platelets; or bone marrow tests and blood clotting tests to check for proper platelet production and function. You may also need an ultrasound to check the spleen to see if it’s enlarged and if there’s a possible rattling of platelets inside.

Sometimes thrombocytopenia is only mild and does not even need to be treated, as the blood can still clot normally. In other cases, if it becomes serious, your doctor may need to prescribe medication to ensure that the blood can clot or change the medications you are currently taking to stop their side effects. Medicines and treatments used to stabilize very low platelet counts may include platelet transfusions, splenectomy (surgery to remove the spleen), corticosteroids, or immunoglobulins, which block the effects of the immune system. (1)

Low Platelet Count (in Brief)

After diagnosis, you can use the recommendations below to increase the number of platelets in the blood, manage symptoms and prevent the development of complications:

A deficiency of vitamin B12 or folate (vitamin B9) can cause a mild to moderately low platelet count. Taking supplements is one way to address this, but a better option is to get enough of these nutrients to begin with. Vitamin B12 deficiency is thought to be one of the leading nutrient deficiencies in the world, and folate deficiency puts you at risk of not only having low platelets, but pregnancy complications, heart problems and fatigue. Therefore, you should consume foods with these vital nutrients:

In addition to making sure you’re getting enough B12 and folate, focus on eating a generally unprocessed, balanced diet to boost your immunity against viruses or infections and help your organs detoxify your body from the chemicals you encounter. Fresh fruits and vegetables are especially important for meeting your nutrient needs, including: leafy greens, berries, cruciferous vegetables, fresh herbs and spices.

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

According to the Platelet Support Association, about 40 percent of people with low platelet counts report some improvement in bleeding symptoms and platelet counts after following a macrobiotic diet or the diet recommended in Eat Right for Your Type by Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo. These recommendations include eating more fresh foods as described above, avoiding packaged/processed foods, and limiting or eliminating dairy products, low-quality meats, and added sugars. (2)

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People who drink have a higher risk of low platelet counts because alcohol slows down the production of platelets. According to a magazine report

Heavy alcohol consumption can cause a generalized suppression of blood cell production and the production of structurally abnormal blood cell precursors that do not function properly for blood clotting. Research shows that one percent of alcoholics have defective red blood cells that are destroyed prematurely, as well as abnormal levels of white blood cells and are more likely to have autoimmune reactions and frequent bacterial infections. Thrombocytopenia affects up to 43 percent of alcoholics who eat normally and up to 80 percent of non-eaters. (3)

Everyone reacts to drinking alcohol differently, so you need to consider your unique situation and medical history to know how much alcohol your body can handle without complications. The general recommendation for healthy adults is to drink no more than one to two drinks a day (one for adult women, two for men), so those with low platelets should drink even less. Avoiding sugary, processed beverages is also helpful because they tend to contain many chemicals that can also disrupt normal platelet production, including artificial sweeteners like aspartame, synthetic colors, and preservatives.

Chemicals, such as pesticides found in non-organic produce, mercury from certain seafood, arsenic and benzene, can slow platelet production. Tips to help reduce your exposure to these harmful chemicals include:

Platelet Count (plt)

Over-the-counter pain relievers such as aspirin and ibuprofen can thin the blood and affect platelet levels. Although they reduce pain, they can also increase the risk of bleeding disorders when used too often. How much is too much? It depends on the person, but if you rely on taking them almost every day, you could experience a number of side effects.

It may not work as quickly, but you can help manage your pain naturally by improving your diet and reducing inflammation. Exercise and anti-inflammatory supplements also help, including omega-3 fish oil, turmeric, frankincense/boswellia, and peppermint essential oil.

In addition to the vitamins B12 and folate described above to prevent deficiency, and anti-inflammatory medications to control pain, there is evidence that people with low platelet counts may also benefit from taking or consuming more of the following: (4)

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

For people already diagnosed with low platelet counts, it’s important to avoid injury and infection, as both can worsen autoimmune reactions, enlarge the spleen, and cause excessive bleeding. Be careful to avoid injuries related to sports, work, exercise or operating machinery.

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Most experts recommend that people with low platelet counts avoid contact sports, such as boxing, football, skiing or karate, which can cause bleeding. Protect your spleen by avoiding exposure to infections and viruses as much as possible, which means staying away from sick family members or co-workers and keeping children with low platelet counts out of day care facilities.

If you have a low platelet count that’s causing your skin to bruise or turn red, try this homemade bruise cream made with natural, soothing ingredients like frankincense, shea butter, jojoba oil, and coconut oil.

An abnormally high platelet count is called thrombocytosis. The underlying condition of high platelets may be an infection, or it may be due to a disease of the blood and bone marrow, making the causes similar to those of low platelets. Symptoms include headaches, dizziness or lightheadedness, chest pain, and weakness. Both high and low platelet counts are treated similarly and depend on what caused them. Usually, changing one’s medications, diet, and nutrient intake can help with both conditions or ensure that any underlying infection or autoimmune disorder is identified.

The most obvious sign or symptom of a low platelet count is bleeding that cannot be stopped by the usual interventions, such as keeping a bandage on the wound/cut. Some people who find out after an annual physical exam that they have a low platelet count, while others may experience a fall or injury and seek help for heavy bleeding.

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It’s possible for some people to have ITP (a type of low platelets which is an autoimmune disease) in their systems and not be aware of it until something causes bleeding and raises suspicion, leading them to see their doctor – at which point they get a diagnosis.

Platelets in the blood are constantly renewed by the bone marrow, and the number remains normal and consistent through a process of continuous production and destruction. In healthy people, platelets die after about 10 days, after which they are replaced by new ones. But in people with low platelet counts, either fewer platelets are produced, or the platelets are removed more quickly, which keeps their number abnormally low.

Bone marrow

Cause Of Low Platelet Count In Blood

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