Thrombocytopenia is an abnormally low level of platelets in the blood.
Platelets are made by the bone marrow. They help your blood to clot. People with thrombocytopenia can have excessive bleeding.
This condition can occur in varying degrees. The risk of bleeding increases as the platelet count decreases.
Thrombocytopenia can occur alone. Or, it can develop as a complication of another disease, such as cancer or a viral infection. In some cases, it is a chronic (long-lasting) condition that persists for years. In other cases, it develops suddenly and dramatically.
In general, thrombocytopenia develops for one or more of the following reasons:
The body's bone marrow fails to produce enough platelets.
The bone marrow produces enough platelets, but the body destroys them.
Too many platelets remain in the spleen.
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