Immune thrombocytopenia occurred in five patients with cancer receiving α-interferon. The median pretreatment platelet count was 217,000/cu mm, which fell to a median of 12,000/cu mm after a median of 25 days of interferon therapy. All had normal numbers of megakaryocytes, with dysplasia noted in three; all four who were tested had platelet-associated immunoglobulin. All had normalization of platelet counts with prednisone therapy. Four tolerated re-treatment with interferon, two with concurrent prednisone administration and two others following splenectomy. Immune thrombocytopenia should be considered in patients who become thrombocytopenic during interferon therapy.
McLaughlin P, Talpaz M, Quesada JR, Saleem A, Barlogie B, Gutterman JU. Immune Thrombocytopenia Following α-Interferon Therapy in Patients With Cancer. JAMA. 1985;254(10):1353-1354. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360100103022