Methods for counting platelets in severe thrombocytopenia

Helen C Segal, Paul Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Accurate platelet counts in severe thrombocytopenia are critical in clinical practice to facilitate decisions at prophylactic platelet-transfusion thresholds. Until recent years, the accuracy of platelet counts has been limited by the reliance of hematology analyzers on calibration material values derived from the manual platelet counting method. The calibration of hematology analyzers in thrombocytopenia and the reduction of variation between instruments have been hindered by a lack of adequate quality control materials, making the accuracy of automated methodologies in routine practice difficult to assess. This situation could now be vastly improved by the use of the International Reference Method (IRM) to assign calibration materials and by further knowledge of the accuracy and limitations of the particular types of automated platelet count available to the clinician. These changes will improve clinical confidence in the accuracy of a platelet count and thus inform clinical decisions at the current level of prophylactic platelet transfusions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-5
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent Hematology Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2006


  • Automation
  • Calibration
  • Humans
  • Platelet Count
  • Platelet Transfusion
  • Thrombocytopenia


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