Thrombopoietin Contributes to Extreme Thrombocytosis after Pediatric Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplantation

Juan P. Gurria, Alexander A. Boucher, Lindsey Hornung, Joseph S. Palumbo, Priscila Badia, Lori Luchtman-Jones, Maisam Abu-El-Haija, Tom K. Lin, Jaimie D. Nathan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective This study aims to explore the role of thrombopoietin (TPO) production in extreme thrombocytosis that is often observed after pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation (IAT) and the effectiveness of hydroxyurea in thrombocytosis management. Methods Retrospective chart review was performed for all patients who underwent pancreatectomy with IAT at our institution between April 1, 2015, and December 31, 2016. Data evaluated included demographics, platelet counts, TPO levels, and thrombocytosis management strategies. Results Twelve total and 1 subtotal pancreatectomy with IAT cases were reviewed. All operations included splenectomy. No major surgical or thrombotic complications occurred. Thrombopoietin levels, normal preoperatively, rose significantly (median, 219 pg/mL) soon after surgery, peaking on median postoperative day 3. Platelet counts, also normal preoperatively, increased within a week of surgery, with 92% over 1000 K/μL (median peak platelet count, 1403 K/μL). Platelet counts and TPO levels dropped after hydroxyurea initiation in most patients. Conclusions After pancreatectomy with IAT, patients experienced marked TPO rise and subsequent thrombocytosis, and both decreased significantly after hydroxyurea initiation. These data suggest that TPO elevation and associated increased platelet production may be one driver of early extreme post-total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation thrombocytosis, and this process may be modulated by hydroxyurea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)652-655
Number of pages4
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 16 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • hydroxyurea
  • thrombocytosis
  • thrombopoietin

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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