Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), acquired
is a blood disorder characterized by low platelets (i.e., thrombocytopenia), small areas of bleeding under the skin (i.e., purpura), low red blood cell count, and hemolytic anemia. TTP causes blood clots (thrombi) to form in small blood vessels throughout the body. These clots can cause serious medical problems if they block vessels and restrict blood flow to organs such as the brain, kidneys, and heart. Resulting complications can include neurological problems (such as personality changes, headaches, confusion, and slurred speech), fever, abnormal kidney function, abdominal pain, and heart problems. Hemolytic anemia can lead to paleness, yellowing of the eyes and skin (jaundice), fatigue, shortness of breath, and a rapid heart rate. TTP, acquired usually appears in late childhood or adulthood. Affected individuals may have a single episode of signs and symptoms, or they may recur over time. This condition results from a reduction in ADAMTS13 enzyme activity caused by autoantibodies. Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.