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Dr. Andrew Rynne
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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

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What causes low platelet count, nausea, lightheadedness and vomiting in an elderly man?

Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Deepak Sundriyal

Oncologist

Practicing since :2005

Answered : 1546 Questions

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Posted on Mon, 6 Jun 2016 in Cancer
Question: Good morning. We are having an issue with my 86 yo father. He had a heart double by-pass in 2004. After about a month he had a filter inserted to deal with a larger blood clot. He has been on coumadin since 2004-05. Recently, he's been having some issues (lost alot of weight, nausea, light headed). The doctors think it is the result of too much medicine, particularly the coumadin. So, they took him off the coumadin and couple other meds (i.e.prednisone). Well, his platelets are wrecked because of the longterm coumadin. They have scheduled him for a bone marrow biopsy 4/14, but I read in this article that platelets can be increased www.thrombocyte.com/how-to-increase-platelet-count/ I'd rather try to increase the platelets since most of his labs have come back normal each time he has been to hospital within the last couple of months for nausea, lightheaded, vomiting). Please advise. Thank you!
doctor
Answered by Dr. Deepak Sundriyal 17 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Hello dear. You can wait if platelets are not very low.

Detailed Answer:
Hello dear. There may be many more causes of low platelet counts besides drug effects. Usually it is due to some occult viral infection. it may also be due to immune thrombocytopenia (which your doc is suspecting but the probability is low in old age).
If the platelet count is not very low, if it is not progressively falling or if there is no bleeding you can safely wait for the platelets to come up.
As of now there is little evidence if any food helps to increase platelet count. Of course there are certain drugs but they are not needed in this case as of now.
You can get a repeat count after a period of 1 week.
Thanks and regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Naveen Kumar
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