idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura

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(ITP) an autoimmune disease in which platelets are destroyed, leading to spontaneous bruising (see purpura). Acute ITP is a relatively mild disease of children, who usually recover without treatment. A chronic form of the disease, typically affecting adults, is more serious, requiring treatment with corticosteroids or, if there is no response, with splenectomy. If both fail, immunosuppressant drugs may be effective. Platelet concentrates are used for life-threatening bleeding.

Subjects: Medicine and Health.

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