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Original Contribution
June 16, 1978

Incidence of Hemorrhagic Complications in Patients With Cancer

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Oncology (Drs Belt, Leite, and Stephens), University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, and the Division of Clinical Oncology (Dr Haas), Veterans Administration Hospital, Kansas City, Mo.

JAMA. 1978;239(24):2571-2574. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03280510055019

The incidence and type of hemorrhage were studied in 718 patients with solid tumors. All patients were receiving myelosuppressive chemotherapeutic agents. Seventy-five patients (10.4%) experienced one or more episodes of hemorrhage. Bleeding was due to tumor invasion in 25 patients (33.3%), was due to disseminated intravascular coagulation in seven patients (9.3%), and was unrelated to malignant neoplasms or drug treatment in six patients (8%). Thirty-seven patients (49.3%) had hemorrhages associated with drug-induced thrombocytopenia. There was a quantitative relationship between the incidence of hemorrhage and the platelet count for both the thrombocytopenic group and the total group of patients with hemorrhages from all causes. The incidence of hemorrhage was low until the platelet count decreased below 10,000/cu mm.

(JAMA 239:2571-2574, 1978)