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March 16, 1946


Author Affiliations

Puunene, Maui, Hawaii

JAMA. 1946;130(11):700-702. doi:10.1001/jama.1946.02870110024007

According to Polowe,1 who reviewed the literature in 1944, 62 cases of pregnancy complicated by thrombocytopenic purpura have been reported. Most of the patients had noevidence of purpura before pregnancy, but at varying times during pregnancy acute hemorrhagic purpura developed with bleeding from all the mucous membranes and into the skin. The mortality was about 55 per cent for the mothers and was slightly higher for the infants. The maternal mortality was usually due to uterine bleeding following delivery, which was often premature. Some of the infants are reported to have died of hemorrhage and part of these were known to have had thrombocytopenia. That congenital thrombocytopenic purpura2 may occur is suggested by the numerous cases reported in which both the mother and the infant have been affected. However, not all of the infants have been affected, and it may be that the tendency for thrombocytopenia is inherited.