n South African Journal of Child Health - A survey of the management of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura in South Africa : do we need guidelines for developing countries?




. Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is the most common bleeding disorder of childhood.

. To describe the management of ITP in South Africa.
. A survey was sent to 410 doctors in the country, describing four different scenarios in children newly diagnosed with ITP and soliciting responses concerning the diagnosis and management.
. Steroids were the first line of choice in treating ITP. Anti-D immunoglobulin was not considered in the management, and most practitioners would perform a bone marrow aspiration even if no treatment with steroids would be given. The vast majority of the patients would be treated in hospital.
. This is the first study done in South Africa (and in Africa), and it shows a great variation in the management of children with newly diagnosed ITP. Prospective studies in developing countries where various constraints to health care delivery exist are required to produce evidence-based recommendations for this patient group.


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