Oncology (General Cancer)/platelet level

Advertisement


Question
I had blood labs done and my platelet level is low at 48,000. I am a heavy alcoholic and quit drinking and in 12 days I retest. Is this enough time for platelets to recover? Thanks

Answer
Twelve days may not be enough; and sometimes a low platelet count is due to liver damage.  Platelets can be damaged in the liver, and sometimes the spleen becomes enlarged as a result of liver damage, and then the platelets can be damaged there as well.  Whether or not they get better, you shouldn't have problems at 48,000, but any lower, you might.  There are some disorders that can cause "pseudothrombocytopenia" and your doctor should test you for that as well, which basically means drawing the blood in heparin rather than edta.  some alcohol abusers tend to have this problem as well.  Hope you can stay away from the alcohol!  Good luck.  

Oncology (General Cancer)

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Donald Higby, M.D.

Expertise

I can answer almost all questions related to the treatment and natural course of most kinds of cancer, especially cancers of prostate, colon, lung and breast.

Experience

I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.

Organizations
American Society of Clinical Oncology

Publications
New England Journal of Medicine American Journal of Medicine Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Hematology Transfusion Medicine

Education/Credentials
MD, Stanford University Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

Awards and Honors
America's Best Physicians, last 14 years

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.