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Autoimmune hemolytic anemia
Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency
Hemolytic disease of the newborn
Paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria
Pyruvate kinase deficiency
Sickle cell disease (NORD)
Folate (Vitamin B9) deficiency
Vitamin B12 deficiency
Anemia of chronic disease
Iron deficiency anemia
Vitamin K deficiency
Langerhans cell histiocytosis
Essential thrombocythemia (NORD)
Polycythemia vera (NORD)
Acute intermittent porphyria
Porphyria cutanea tarda
Disseminated intravascular coagulation
Von Willebrand disease
Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance
Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura
Antithrombin III deficiency
Factor V Leiden
Protein C deficiency
Protein S deficiency
Coagulation disorders: Pathology review
Extrinsic hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Heme synthesis disorders: Pathology review
Intrinsic hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Leukemias: Pathology review
Lymphomas: Pathology review
Macrocytic anemia: Pathology review
Microcytic anemia: Pathology review
Mixed platelet and coagulation disorders: Pathology review
Myeloproliferative disorders: Pathology review
Non-hemolytic normocytic anemia: Pathology review
Plasma cell disorders: Pathology review
Platelet disorders: Pathology review
Thrombosis syndromes (hypercoagulability): Pathology review
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Heparin Induced Thrombocytopenia (HIT)
The term heparin-induced thrombocytopenia can be divided into two parts.
Heparin refers to an anticoagulant medication which prevents blood clots from forming, and thrombocytopenia refers to decreased number of thrombocytes, or platelets, in the blood.
So, heparin-induced thrombocytopenia or, HIT, is a complication caused by heparin that results in decreased platelets in the blood.
Okay, so imagine you’re making dinner and accidentally cut one of your fingers.
Now, if your body doesn’t stop the bleeding, you will keep losing blood until there’s not enough to supply the vital organs like the heart and brain.
Now to prevent this from happening the body has a process called hemostasis.
This process has two phases: primary and secondary hemostasis.
In primary hemostasis, platelets aggregate to form a plug at the site of an injured blood vessel.
While these platelets are aggregating, coagulation, or secondary hemostasis starts.
This is where numerous enzymes that are always floating around in the blood called clotting factors get proteolytically activated, meaning that activation happens when a small piece is chopped off - a bit like pulling the pin out of a grenade.
These factors activate one another, eventually leading to the activation of fibrin or factor Ia.
That results in a fibrin mesh which forms around the platelet plug to reinforce it and hold it together.
Without primary and secondary hemostasis, our body would suffer massive blood loss from even the most minor injuries; imagine losing all of your blood from something as simple as a pinprick!
Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is a rare but potentially life-threatening complication that can occur during the treatment course with heparin. HIT occurs when the body produces antibodies against heparin, which then attach to and damage platelets (the cells that help the blood clot). This can decrease the number of platelets in the blood (thrombocytopenia), which can cause easy bruising and bleeding.
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