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Frojmovic MM, Milton JG, Caen JP, and Tobelem G. 1978. Platelets from giant platelet syndrome (BSS) are discocytes and normal sized. J. Lab. Clin. Med 91: 109-116. Full Article

A comparison is made between the shape of human platelets obtained from nine normal donors and two BSS donors. Sizes are evaluated from a cinematographic analysis of freely rotating, unfixed, and glutaraldehyde-hardened platelets in citrated PRP and of platelets on blood smear. On blood smear, the mean diameters of BSS platelets are 1.7 to 1.8 times larger than those of normal platelets, with a major fraction having a diameter greater than 2.5 microns. As for normal donors, 80% to 90% BSS platelets in PRP are in the disc form (discocyte). In addition, they are essentially indistinguishable from a normal discocyte. Echinocytes (spherical forms with pseudopods) for BSS have a main body diameter (i.e. excluding pseudopods) 1.6 times larger than normal and in addition a reduced number of pseudopods. The results demonstrate that the giant size of BSS platelets results from abnormal behavior of these platelets during preparation of the blood smear. It is suggested that this disorder is associated with a defect in the mechanism of platelet shape change.

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