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Platelet Count

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Overview

The Platelet Count test is a laboratory test to count the number of platelets present in the blood.

What is Platelet Count?

Platelets are the components in blood that is responsible for blood clotting. They are smaller than white blood cells and red blood cells. Platelet Count test is used to monitor or diagnose diseases, or to find out the reason for excessive bleeding or clotting.

Why is Platelet Count suggested?

A Platelet Count test is often ordered as part of a complete blood count and is done for the following signs and symptoms:

  • Unexplained bruising.
  • Wounds that continue to bleed longer than usual.
  • Regular nosebleeds.
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding (detectable from a sample of stool).
  • Excessive menstrual bleeding.
  • Petechiae which are small red spots on the skin.
  • Purpura or small purple spots on the skin, caused by subcutaneous bleeding.

How is Platelet Count performed?

The Platelet Count test is done in the following way:

  • A lab technician draws blood from a vein in your arm or hand.
  • The blood sample is sent to the laboratory for analysis.

This is how a Platelet Count test is done.

What are the parameters measured in Platelet Count?

The Platelet Count test measures the count of platelets or thrombocytes in the blood sample provided.

Preparation before performing Platelet Count

There is no special preparation necessary for a Platelet Count test. You need to inform your doctor about any medications you might be taking.

Post-care after Platelet Count

There is no post-care necessary after Platelet Count test.

Sample types in Platelet Count

The Platelet Count test requires a whole blood sample.

Side effects/risks of Platelet Count

The Platelet Count test has the following risks due to blood being drawn:

  • Bleeding
  • Fainting or dizziness.
  • Hematoma which is blood pooling under the skin.
  • Infection due to the skin being broken.

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