Pseudothrombocytopenia: early recognition avoids unnecessary intervention

Rajeshwari Narayanan, Prahada Jagannathan, Kala Kandhasamy


Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid dependent pseudothrombocytopenia (EDTA-PTCP) is the phenomenon of a spurious low platelet count due to EDTA induced aggregation of platelets. Failure to identify this can lead to unwarranted diagnostic testing, platelet transfusions and deferring emergency surgeries. An adolescent girl child was referred for acute febrile illness with thrombocytopenia. Peripheral smear examination of EDTA sample revealed platelet clumping. WBC and platelet histograms also supported the same. Repeat platelet counts in sodium citrate and heparin confirmed EDTA-PTCP.


EDTA, Platelet clumping, Pseudothrombocytopenia

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