When platelets decrease in dengue?

In dengue fever, a decrease in platelet count, a condition called thrombocytopenia, typically occurs during the later stages of the illness. Platelets are a type of blood cell that plays a crucial role in blood clotting. Thrombocytopenia is a common feature of dengue and can contribute to bleeding tendencies in severe cases. Here’s a general timeline of platelet count changes in dengue:

  1. Initial Stage: In the early phase of dengue fever (febrile phase), which usually lasts for about 2-7 days, the platelet count often remains within the normal range for most patients. Some individuals might experience a mild drop in platelet count during this phase, but it typically does not reach a critically low level.
  2. Critical Drop: Thrombocytopenia becomes more pronounced during the critical phase of dengue, which typically occurs around the time when the fever subsides, usually on or after day 3-7 of illness. The platelet count can drop significantly during this phase and may reach levels that are considered medically low.
  3. Recovery Phase: After the critical phase, which lasts for about 24-48 hours, platelet counts usually begin to recover gradually. In most cases, the platelet count starts to rise within a few days, and patients start feeling better.

It’s important to note that not all individuals with dengue fever will experience a severe drop in platelet count, and the severity of thrombocytopenia can vary from person to person. Severe thrombocytopenia is more commonly associated with severe forms of dengue, such as dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) or dengue shock syndrome (DSS).

During the critical phase of dengue, close monitoring of platelet counts and clinical symptoms is essential. In severe cases or when platelet counts drop to dangerously low levels, platelet transfusions may be necessary to prevent or treat bleeding complications. However, platelet transfusions are typically reserved for individuals with severe dengue or those who are at high risk of bleeding.

If you or someone you know is diagnosed with dengue fever, it’s crucial to follow the guidance of healthcare professionals and seek medical attention promptly if there are signs of severe dengue or bleeding.

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