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Avatar universal

Low Platelets & Hep C

Does any one know what happens next...
Husband's platelet count down to 15 -  he's been on Inteferon & Ribaviron treatment for 6 weeks, put on hold for 2 weeks waiting for blood results to pick up...

Had Interferon + Ribaviron trial for 6 mths - cleared virus for 3 months but it came back - this was over 6 years ago

He's had the virus a long time (ex blood transfusion post surgery @ 19 year - he's now 56)

any one been down this road... wondering what lays before us???

39 Responses
217229 tn?1192762404
Have they given him anything to bring them up?

There are some good rescue drugs - but I don't know what his levels are as far as how much damage, etc.

I also don't know what's causing the lowering ---- did he have a baseline prior to starting TX?

Avatar universal
No - not yet.  
We are trying Vit K via diet & suppliments with Calcium plus Vit D & Vit K - that seems to be the only way to get it other than Brocoli, spinach etc....

Specisalist said it wouldn't hep but wouldn't hurt either... feel we have to give it a try.

Platelet Count was 40 b4 treatment commenced droped to 27 and now 15
217229 tn?1192762404
40 is low to start off --- Ask about meds that can help raise the levels.

You are seeing someone who has a lot of experience in treating?

Neumega might be the right answer....

I'm sorry - it's late and I'm brain dead --- but you need to ask your doctor, if your significant wants to continue tx --- he might need the rescue drugs --- and they CAN help.

A lot of folks on this board have had to have them --- so maybe someone can help you out on that ok? There are a couple of them out there --- so you might get some answers to which ones helped people the best.

Much luck.


Avatar universal
not sure if Neumega is available in Australia..
We read about new trial medication for low platelets & Hep C but its not available in Australia yet... thanks for your advice.. we will ask about it.

Doctor seems to have experience... so hard to know for sure??

Thought it would help to speak to others that have been down this road...

217229 tn?1192762404
217229 tn?1192762404
Procrit and Neupogen...

But basically Only thing might be available is a gamma globulin transfusion ---- a few folks here have had that as well.

I don't know that there would be a difference from country to country - but there might be another name for these things in different countries.

Good luck  - OK?

217229 tn?1192762404
Look up: oprelvekin

Maybe y'all have another name for it over there?
217229 tn?1192762404
oh and here's another link for you

Avatar universal
thanks so much for your advice - appreciate any info we can get...
will check out the sites now.
Avatar universal
neupogen can raise it..
Avatar universal
Check to  be sure that is the correct platlet count.  I have never seen one that low where they did not hospitalize the pt.and give FFP...
Avatar universal
Sorry new to this I don't understand the term FFP???

I know that the normal range for platelets is 150-400 - it is scary to be at only 10% of the low range...
Avatar universal
Thanks so much for your advice, I've looked this up - does sound like it wil help -
apt with GP tomorow for latest blood results will ask about it then if result still low.
We've emailed query to Hep Specialist also...
144210 tn?1273088782
when you say "put on hold for 2 weeks", do you mean tox was stopped? That would not be a good idea at all. A count of 15 is not a good reason to halt tox.
Avatar universal
he was told to stop the interferon & ribaviron for 2 weeks at this stage... just got the last results from mondays blood tests platelets now 14... at least its not dropping quiet so fast... seeing gp in a couple hours
144210 tn?1273088782
That sounds like a real blunder by his doc but I do not like to second guess a professional. Perhaps there is something else going on? Was he an RVR?
144210 tn?1273088782
Low platelets are common on tox. and most docs don't prescribe rescue drugs until counts reach 10 or so. 15 is low but still in the normal range (barely) and halting treatment can be disastrous to the odds of reaching SVR. I must be missing something though, because it makes no sense that the doc would halt treatment.
144210 tn?1273088782
Are his platelets literally at 15?!  I assumed that 15 meant 150!  If it is at 15 literally, then I am a moron and you can disregard my previous posts!
Avatar universal
Neupogen will not help - it increases white blood cells and to my knowledge has no effect on platelet production.
Neumega is a drug that increases platelet production and it is something to consider if you can get it in Australia. It may be of benefit.
A platelet count of 15,000 is very low and some action should be taken. Discontinuation of interferon seems like the right response. Interferon often produces a decreased platelet count (thrombocytopenia) and cirrhosis is also associated with thrombocytopenia. If his platelet count before starting treatment was 40,000 it suggests that he may have some degree of cirrhosis.
Good luck, Mike
Avatar universal
Platelets now 14 (or 14,000) waiting for GP to talk to Hep Specialist to see what course we can take, frustrating to not have answers but hopefully they can offer some hope...

Hubby feeling very ripped off... he's had such a healthy lifestlye... no drinking, smoking and a good low fat diet all his life.. just the luck of the draw (rusian roulette) when you needed to have blood transfusions for medical reasons they didn't know about blood born virus  like HCV back in the early 70's... I had a transfusion in the early 60's so there but for the grace of god....

We just have to trust the Dr's and hope that they can give us something to hope for...  hubby's keen to try to go one with the treatment so that he can finally clear the virus.

I don't know what you mean by the terms RVR or SVR ... is there a thread that explains all the terms on this site?
Thanks for your encouragement and comments.
Avatar universal
Hi thanks for your feedback re the drugs that have been mentioned, I had read up on them and discovered that Neumega is what we might need to pursue, our GP mentioned a drug that could help has had some success with it before with another ITP patient so we are waiting for him to consult with the Hep Specialist first... can't remember what he called the drug .. probably have different names for them here in Australia.

His ferritin levels are through the roof also but the ALT & Bil levels have dropped back a lot so that was a good sign... just hope that if we can get platelets under control so he will be able to tolerate the treatment so that he can hopefully clear the virus for good.

We dont know the geno type or viral load... was sure there were test done for this but specialist hasn't advised these and cant find them on the results that we have copies of.

Thanks for your good wishes.
96938 tn?1189799858
Take a look at this. In particular the trial sites in Australia

Avatar universal
Pls. stay on  his doc about that low platlet count, this does concern me.  I believe it is the riba that causes a low platlet count.  I dont know what your husband count was at the start of tx, but maybe you should put in a call to his hep. tomorrow. Let me know how it goes.....Wishing both of you all the best....Leah

96938 tn?1189799858
What I attempted to post was a result from clinicaltrials.gov  .  It displayed a result for a trial drug called   eltrombopag.  The intent is to determine the results of this med, intended to treat thrombocytopenia, in the presence of hcv and antiviral (soc) treatment.  There are several sites in Australia that seem to be recruiting now.  Maybe a little research.
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