Guidance on Platelet Transfusion for Patients with Hypoproliferative Thrombocytopenia


Patients with hypoproliferative thrombocytopenia are at an increased risk for hemorrhage and alloimmunization to platelets. Updated guidance for optimizing platelet transfusion therapy is needed as data from recent pivotal trials have the potential to change practice. This guideline, developed by a large international panel using a systematic search strategy and standardized methods to develop recommendations, incorporates recent trials not available when previous guidelines were developed. We found that prophylactic platelet transfusion for platelet counts less than or equal to 10 × 109/L is the optimal approach to decrease the risk of hemorrhage for patients requiring chemotherapy or undergoing allogeneic or autologous transplantation. A low dose of platelets (1.41 × 1011/m2) is hemostatically as effective as higher dose of platelets but requires more frequent platelet transfusions suggesting that low-dose platelets may be used in hospitalized patients. For outpatients, a median dose (2.4 × 1011/m2) may be more cost-effective to prevent clinic visits only to receive a transfusion. In terms of platelet products, whole blood–derived platelet concentrates can be used interchangeably with apheresis platelets, and ABO-compatible platelet should be given to improve platelet increments and decrease the rate of refractoriness to platelet transfusion. For RhD-negative female children or women of child-bearing potential who have received RhD-positive platelets, Rh immunoglobulin should probably be given to prevent immunization to the RhD antigen. Providing platelet support for the alloimmunized refractory patients with ABO-matched and HLA-selected or crossmatched products is of some benefit, yet the degree of benefit needs to be assessed in the era of leukoreduction.