Platelet Function and Other Indices of Hemostasis in Chronic Liver Disease

Sylvester Chuks Nwokediuko, Obike Godswill Ibegbulam


Background: Bleeding time has been used for a long time as a global test of platelet function. Due to a number of pitfalls the test has been losing popularity. This study was designed to determine the prevalence of prolonged bleeding time in Nigerians with chronic liver disease in relation to other indices of hemostasis.

Methods: Bleeding time, platelet count, prothrombin time (PT) and activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT) were determined in patients with chronic liver disease seen over a twenty-eight-month period. Liver disease severity was graded using Child’s score.

Results: Only 14 of 164 (8.5%) patients with chronic liver disease had prolonged bleeding time while 60 patients (36.6%) had significantly prolonged PT. Thirty seven patients (22.6%) had prolonged aPTT. Bleeding time showed positive correlation with PT and aPTT but negative correlation with platelet count.

Conclusions: Bleeding time is not sensitive in detecting disorders of hemostasis in patients with chronic liver disease although it correlates significantly with other indices of hemostasis.

Gastroenterol Res. 2010;3(4):167-170


Bleeding time; Hemostasis; Prothrombin time; Partial thromboplastin time; Liver disease

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