A common complication of chronic liver disease (CLD) is thrombocytopenia. Thrombocytopenia is defined as a low platelet count. Platelets are blood cells that work together to form clots that help to stop bleeding. If you are bleeding, platelets go to the site of bleeding and form a clot or plug to stop the bleed. A normal platelet count is considered to be anywhere from 150,000 to 350,000. Severe thrombocytopenia is defined as a platelet count below 50,000.
When platelet counts are low, this can lead to bruising and bleeding more easily than usual. Low platelet counts can also lead to an increased risk of bleeding in patients undergoing medical or dental procedures. Patients with platelet counts greater than 50,000 are not typically considered to be at a higher risk of bleeding during medical procedures. If your platelets are low, having more platelets at the time of your procedure may help to reduce the risk of bleeding. Your doctor will review your platelet counts prior to your planned procedure and will determine if you would benefit from a higher platelet count prior to your procedure.