The key difference between thrombosis and thrombocytopenia is that thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot inside the blood vessel, preventing excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured, while thrombocytopenia is a condition of having low blood platelet count that causes excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is inured.
Platelets are tiny blood cells that assist the body in the formation of blood clots to stop bleeding. If a blood vessel gets damaged, it sends signals to the platelets. The platelets later rush to the site of the damage and form a plug or clot to fix the damage. Thrombosis and thrombocytopenia are two phenomena associated with platelets.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Thrombosis
3. What is Thrombocytopenia
4. Similarities – Thrombosis and Thrombocytopenia
5. Thrombosis vs Thrombocytopenia in Tabular Form
6. Summary – Thrombosis vs Thrombocytopenia
What is Thrombosis?
Thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel, obstructing the flow of blood through the circulatory system. When a blood vessel is injured, the body normally uses platelets and fibrin to form a blood clot in order to fix the damage and prevent excessive blood loss. Moreover, even when a blood vessel is not injured, blood clots can be formed in the body under certain conditions. A piece of the clot that breaks free and travels around the body is known as an embolus. The lodging of this embolus somewhere else in the body can cause a medical condition called embolism.
Generally, there are two types of thrombosis; venous thrombosis (occurs in veins) and arterial thrombosis (occurs in arteries). Clotting is a normal function that stops the body from bleeding too much. However, blood clots that form in some places and don’t dissolve on their own can be dangerous to health and may cause severe symptoms. The symptoms of thrombosis include pain in one leg (usually the calf or inner thigh), swelling in the leg or arm, chest pain, numbness or weakness on one side of the body, and sudden changes in the mental state. Thrombosis can be diagnosed through ultrasound, blood tests, venography, MRI, MRA, or CT. Furthermore, thrombosis is treated by blood-thinning medicines (anticoagulants), using thin tubes (catheters) to widen the affected vessels, using wire mesh tube (stent) that holds a blood vessel open, and medicines to dissolve blood clots.
What is Thrombocytopenia?
Thrombocytopenia is a condition of having a low blood platelet count that causes excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured. Thrombocytopenia usually occurs when a blood platelet count of a person is very low. When people with thrombocytopenia get a cut or other injury, they may bleed too much, and the bleeding can be hard to stop.
Thrombocytopenia can be inherited or can be caused due to certain disorders, conditions, medications such as alcohol use disorder, autoimmune disorders that cause ITP (idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura), bone marrow diseases such as aplastic anemia, leukemia, certain lymphomas, cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation, enlarged spleen caused by cirrhosis or Gaucher disease, exposure to certain toxic chemicals (arsenic, benzene or pesticides), medications that are used to treat bacterial infections (antibiotics), seizure (anti-seizure drugs), heart problems, and viruses like hepatitis C, CMV, EBV, HIV.
The signs and symptoms of this condition may include easy or excessive bruising (purpura), superficial bleeding into the skin that appears as a rash pinpoint-sized, prolonged bleeding from cuts, bleeding from gums or nose, blood in urine or stools, unusually heavy menstrual flows, fatigue or weakness, and enlarged spleen. Thrombocytopenia can be diagnosed through physical exams, blood count, blood clot tests, bone marrow biopsies, and imaging tests (ultrasound and CT scan). Furthermore, treatments for thrombocytopenia are blood transfusion, surgeries like splenectomy, and other medicines like steroids, plasma exchange, immunoglobulins that reduce platelet destruction, and stimulate platelet production.
What are the Similarities Between Thrombosis and Thrombocytopenia?
- Thrombosis and thrombocytopenia are two phenomena associated with platelets.
- Both phenomena can cause complications.
- These phenomena can have inherited or can be triggered by other medical conditions.
- They can be controlled by specific medicines.
What is the Difference Between Thrombosis and Thrombocytopenia?
Thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel that prevents excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured, while thrombocytopenia is a condition of having a low blood platelet count that causes excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured. Thus, this is the key difference between thrombosis and thrombocytopenia. Furthermore, thrombosis can be a normal bodily function or an abnormal clotting condition, while thrombocytopenia is an abnormal medical condition.
The below infographic presents the differences between thrombosis and thrombocytopenia in tabular form for side by side comparison.
Summary – Thrombosis vs Thrombocytopenia
Thrombosis and thrombocytopenia are two phenomena associated with platelets. Thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot inside a blood vessel that prevents excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured, while thrombocytopenia is a condition of having a low blood platelet count that causes excessive bleeding when a blood vessel is injured. So, this summarizes the difference between thrombosis and thrombocytopenia.