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July 18, 1936

Current Comment

JAMA. 1936;107(3):216-217. doi:10.1001/jama.1936.02770290044016

BLOOD PLATELETS AFTER SPLENECTOMY  One of the most striking and consistent hematologic changes that occur following the removal of the spleen is an increase in the number of platelets in the blood. This response has been observed both in normal persons in whom the spleen has been removed because of sudden rupture due to trauma and in splenectomized patients with certain diseases. Recently, further confirmatory data have been reported.1 Splenectomy in three normal boys from 10 to 11 years of age was followed by thrombocytosis, the number of platelets increasing steadily to a maximum between the fifth and twelfth days, and decreasing slowly thereafter toward normal values. In one patient the platelet count increased from a normal level of 500,000 to a maximum of 1,640,000 on the twelfth day and then decreased, returning to the original value after some two months. Variations in the platelet counts of patients following