This site is intended for healthcare professionals

Go to /sign-in page

You can view 5 more pages before signing in

Autoimmune thrombocytopaenic purpura and pregnancy

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

  • immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is caused by platelet destruction in the reticular endothelial system, due to platelet auto-antibodies against several platelet membrane glycoprotein complexes
    • ITP is characterized by a moderate to severe decrease in the platelet count - approximately 5% of cases of thrombocytopenia in pregnancy are due to ITP
    • ITP requires monitoring during pregnancy and after delivery, and may require treatment, due to the higher risk of maternal hemorrhage when the platelet count is low
    • there is a minor risk of thrombocytopenia in the newborn - the overall risk of neonatal thrombocytopaenia in an infant born to a mother with ITP who has a platelet count of < 50x10 ^9/L is 6-10%
    • unfortunately, there is currently no confirmatory diagnostic test to definitively distinguish ITP from GT (gestational thrombocytopaenia) in otherwise healthy pregnant women presenting with thrombocytopenia
      • ".. the true diagnoses of these two conditions largely become evident in retrospect, after delivery. However, it has to be noted that the delayed recognition of the unwanted disorder and the lack of advance appropriate intervention can, then, potentially jeopardize the final outcome of the mother or the newborn.."(1)
        • thrombocytopenia detected within 28 weeks of pregnancy and platelet counts of less than 50 × 10^9/L at initial presentation are the most important predictive factors for ITP in pregnant women (1)


  • (1) Kwon JYet al. Predictors of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura in pregnant women presenting with thrombocytopenia. International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics 2007; 96 (2):85-88.
  • (2) Kelton JG. Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura complicating pregnancy. Blood Reviews 2002; 16 (1):43-46.

Related pages

Create an account to add page annotations

Annotations allow you to add information to this page that would be handy to have on hand during a consultation. E.g. a website or number. This information will always show when you visit this page.

The content herein is provided for informational purposes and does not replace the need to apply professional clinical judgement when diagnosing or treating any medical condition. A licensed medical practitioner should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions.


Copyright 2024 Oxbridge Solutions Limited, a subsidiary of OmniaMed Communications Limited. All rights reserved. Any distribution or duplication of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited. Oxbridge Solutions receives funding from advertising but maintains editorial independence.