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What are the symptoms of a low blood platelet count?

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Typical symptoms of a low blood platelet count include prolonged bleeding from cuts, bleeding from nose or gum, petechiae, unusually heavy menstrual flow and blood in stools or urine, according to Mayo Clinic. This condition is hard to detect, particularly if mild, since it may have no noticeable symptoms, explains MedicineNet.

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Platelets are blood components responsible for blood clotting. A microliter of blood normally contains between 150,000 and 400,000 platelets. A person is considered to have a low blood platelet count if these figures fall below 150,000, a condition called thrombocytopenia, states MedicineNet.

Individuals who are experiencing this condition usually take longer than usual to stop bleeding after a cut or an injury and may experience increased bleeding during menstrual periods. In severe cases, such as when this count ranges between 10,000 and 20,000, a patient may experience excessive bleeding under the skin or the nasal cavity. Petechiae are also common, characterized by red spots under the skin surface, notes MedicineNet.

Conditions such as pregnancy; the formation of a sudden clot in the body; bacteria in the blood; medications such as quinine and heparin; and autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis can overuse or destroy platelets. Enlargement of the spleen from disorders such as liver disease and blood cancer can cause thrombocytopenia. This condition is also inheritable, according to Mayo Clinic.

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