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March 21, 1936


JAMA. 1936;106(12):1005-1006. doi:10.1001/jama.1936.92770120003011b

An unusually high blood platelet count of more than 2,500,000 is the reason for this report.

A Scandinavian woman, aged 65, was admitted to the Ancker Hospital in March 1935 because of recurrent extensive subcutaneous hemorrhages and shortness of breath on exertion. She had been in the same hospital five months before because of the same shortness of breath. This was thought to be due to a hypertension with slight decompensation and possibly a coexisting nephritis. In November 1934 the red blood cell count being 5,800,000 and the blood platelet count 1,000,000, venesection was performed at the Ancker dispensary with some subjective relief. Following this, subcutaneous hemorrhages began to appear and on one occasion a severe epistaxis.

On examination the patient's complexion suggested a polycythemia although it was not the typical brick red color. The lips were definitely cyanotic. There were large areas of