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Autoimmune heparin-induced thrombocytopenia: a rare manifestation of COVID-19
  1. Katherine Julian1,
  2. Donald Bucher2 and
  3. Rohit Jain2
  1. 1Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA
  2. 2Department of Internal Medicine, Penn State Health Milton S Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Katherine Julian; kjulian1{at}


We describe the case of a 65-year-old male who presented to an outside hospital for shortness of breath, nausea and vomiting 8 days after testing positive for COVID-19. Initial workup revealed massive bilateral pulmonary emboli and thrombocytopenia. The patient was then admitted to our hospital, received an inferior vena cava filter and initially started on argatroban for autoimmune heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) prophylaxis. On hospital stay day 6, labs revealed a diagnosis of HIT in the setting of COVID-19. This case highlights the rare occurrence of a patient developing HIT without heparin exposure and in the setting of a novel infectious agent, COVID-19.

  • COVID-19
  • haematology (drugs and medicines)
  • haematology (incl blood transfusion)

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  • Contributors KJ: drafting and editing of the manuscript. DB: care of the patient. RJ: editing of the manuscript and care of the patient.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Disclaimer Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.