BACKGROUND:

A bleeding diathesis is a common feature of Noonan syndrome, and various coagulation abnormalities have been reported. Platelet function has never been carefully investigated.

METHODS:

The degree of bleeding diathesis in a cohort of patients with Noonan syndrome was evaluated by a validated bleeding score and investigated with coagulation and platelet function tests. If ratios of prothrombin time and/or activated partial thromboplastin time were prolonged, the activity of clotting factors was measured. Individuals with no history of bleeding formed the control group.

RESULTS:

The study population included 39 patients and 28 controls. Bleeding score was ≥2 (ie, suggestive of a moderate bleeding diathesis) in 15 patients (38.5%) and ≥4 (ie, suggestive of a severe bleeding diathesis) in 7 (17.9%). Abnormal coagulation and/or platelet function tests were found in 14 patients with bleeding score ≥2 (93.3%) but also in 21 (87.5%) of those with bleeding score <2. The prothrombin time and activated partial thromboplastin time were prolonged in 18 patients (46%) and partial deficiency of factor VII, alone or in combination with the deficiency of other vitamin K–dependent factors, was the most frequent coagulation abnormality. Moreover, platelet aggregation and secretion were reduced in 29 of 35 patients (82.9%, P < .01 for all aggregating agents).

CONCLUSIONS:

Nearly 40% of patients with the Noonan syndrome had a bleeding diathesis and >90% of them had platelet function and/or coagulation abnormalities. Results of these tests should be taken into account in the management of bleeding or invasive procedures in these patients.

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