Journal of Medical Laboratory Science

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Platelet Levels and Implications For Pre-Dialysis Chronic Renal Failure Patients

ACU Ezimah, UAM Abijah


Platelet count is assumed to be normal in chronic renal insufficiency. However, the possible effect of loss of platelet function in chronic renal failure (CFR) in relation to occult chronic blood loss, haematuria and overall health of the patient has not been given the desired attention. The aim of this study was to determine the differences in platelet count and morphology between CFR patients and matched controls, as a way of generating information useful for effective strategy for managing this regular clinical problem. Thirty-four patients with CFR aged between 14 - 52 years and matched controls were studied for Hb, PCV, WBC (total and differential) and platelet counts using standard methods. The patients had mean platelet count of 149.0 ± 51.1 as against 205.8 ± 29.2 for controls. Male patients had packed cell level of 0.26 ± 0.08 as against 0.40 ± 0.04 for controls. Female patients had packed cell volume (PCV) levels of 0.21 ± 0.06 as against 0.37 ± 0.05 for controls. The patients had mean white cell count of 6.0 ± 2.4 as against 4.4 ± 1.5 for controls. The differences between the results from the patients and controls were statistically significant (P < 0.05). Blood film examination confirmed that the patients had lower platelet counts compared to the controls. In view of the potentially hazardous consequences of platelet dysfunction, platelet count and morphological examination should be part of mandatory routine tests for CRF patients.
Key words: platelet levels, chronic renal failure
Journal of Medical Laboratory Science Vol.13(1) 2004: 54 - 57
AJOL African Journals Online