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Date of last update: 10/12/2017.

Forum Name: Hematology Topics

Question: Low Platelets - Bone Marrow Biopsy Test

 Elbee - Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:13 am

My aunt has a very low platelet count - she has been tested a few times with the lowest at 65, highest at 73. I know this is very low and after seeing an oncologist, he recommended a bone marrow biopsy. She is 78 years old and does not want to have the test because she does not seem to have any symptoms. She does not have bruising, no fever, feels otherwise okay. Are there any other options or recommendations.
 John Kenyon, CNA - Thu Mar 19, 2009 8:56 pm

User avatar Hello --

While there are no other really definitive tests that would tell more than a bone marrow biopsy, which is the logical next testing step for your aunt's situation, but if she is symptom-free and doesn't want to go through what is sometimes a painful and invasive test, then it's a matter of weighing risks and choosing quality of life against bothersome tests and possibly therapy that could wind up making her feel worse, at least in the short term. If she's feeling well otherwise, she may have a blood or marrow disorder that could potentially shorten her life, but she may enjoy her life more, so long as she remains without symptoms. The only problem with that approach is that if there is disease (which seems likely), then it will just progress. It's a difficult choice, especially in her age group, but it is her choice.

I hope this is helpful. Good luck to you both, and please follow up with us here as needed.

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