Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura Overview
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Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is a disease that destroys platelets. Platelets are sticky cell fragments in your child’s blood that help seal off wounds and form clots to stop bleeding.

In ITP, the child’s immune system attacks the platelets. Doctors do not know why this happens. But it means the child has fewer platelets than normal. Having fewer platelets means your child may bleed more easily. Sometimes people with ITP have purple bruises in their skin due to bleeding from small blood vessels. These bruises are called purpura. The disease can cause more severe bleeding, too.

Children and teens with ITP are treated at Seattle Children’s, a founding organization of Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Seattle Children’s has a long history of successfully caring for children and teens with this and other blood disorders.

Expert Care for Your Child

Seattle Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center brings together experts from more than 20 subspecialties to provide diagnostic services and treatments, including the very latest options. The team of pediatric hematologists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, Child Life specialists, social workers, and chaplains partner with you to provide expert, family-centered care and compassionate support. We help you understand your child’s health and treatment options because you, your child, and your family are an important part of the care team.

Because Seattle Children’s doctors take part in national and international research studies, and often lead them, we can offer new treatment options that many other hospitals cannot give their patients.

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Make an Appointment

To make an appointment, call Seattle Children’s at (206) 987-2106.