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Cefepime: a novel cause of thrombocytopaenia
  1. Shoaib Muhammad1,
  2. Soban Ahmad2,
  3. Behram Ahmed Khan3 and
  4. Amman Yousaf4
  1. 1Urology, Gulab Devi Chest Hospital, Lahore, Pakistan
  2. 2Emergency Medicine, Department of Medical Education, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar
  3. 3University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, Nebraska, USA
  4. 4Internal Medicine, McLaren Health Care Corporation, Flint, Michigan, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Amman Yousaf; ayousafmd2{at}


Thrombocytopaenia is a commonly encountered finding in hospitalised patients. Many antibiotics, especially beta-lactams, are well known to cause thrombocytopaenia by an immune-mediated mechanism. We present a 55-year-old woman who was admitted to the hospital with a complicated urinary tract infection resulting in right-sided pyonephrosis and pararenal abscess. She was observed to develop thrombocytopaenia after initiation of cefepime therapy. Following an extensive work-up for her new-onset thrombocytopaenia, she was diagnosed as a case of a drug (cefepime)-induced thrombocytopaenia. Her platelet count recovered back to normal levels after cessation of cefepime therapy. Based on our PubMed search, there are only a few cases of cefepime-induced thrombocytopaenia published in the literature. This paper illustrates that physicians should include cefepime among the possible aetiologies of thrombocytopaenia. Additionally, this article outlines the currently available approaches to the diagnosis and management of drug-induced thrombocytopaenia.

  • drugs and medicines
  • haematology (drugs and medicines)
  • infections
  • urinary tract infections

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  • Contributors SM and SA drafted and revised the manuscript. BAK drafted and revised the manuscript. AY drafted and critically revised the manuscript and gave the final permission for submission.

  • 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.

  • 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.

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