Fatal thrombocytopenia and thrombocytopathia: An unusual onset of non small cell lung cancer

Giuseppe Tonini, B. Vincenzi, S. Di Cosimo, G. Gravante, D. Santini, V. Ambrogi, E. Micheletti, L. Rocci, M. D'Aprile

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Although bone marrow is a common site of micrometastases for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), thrombocytopathia and hemorrhagic diathesis are rare causes of death. Case Report: A 57-year-old patient was admitted to the emergency room because of massive nosebleeding and hemoptysis. Routine blood analysis showed thrombocytopenia and prolonged bleeding time; results of functional platelet tests suggested concomitant thrombocytopathia. Routine chest X-ray revealed an 18 mm large spot in the right superior lobe. During the first hour of recovery the patient had another episode of nosebleeding. A bone marrow biopsy showed a wide infiltration with neoplastic cells. Histology was compatible with NSCLC. The clinical conditions and hematological parameters progressively deteriorated, and on the third day the patient died because of hypovolemic shock. Conclusion: This is a very rare clinical presentation of NSCLC characterized by massive bleeding due to thrombocytopenia and thrombocytopathia secondary to wide bone marrow infiltration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)272-274
Number of pages3
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • Non-small cell lung cancer
  • Thrombocytopathia
  • Thrombocytopenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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