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Platelets (also called thrombocytes ) help form blood clots that control bleeding. (Source: excerpt from What You Need To Know About Leukemia: NCI)
Platelets: Platelets are one cellular component of blood. Platelets are actually oval shaped bits of broken-up cells called megakaryocytes. Platelets play a vital role in blood clotting and the prevention of excessive blood loss.
Platelets are important to the process of chemical clotting, in which the platelets react with a variety of chemicals in the body, called clotting factors, to form a fibrin clot. Platelets also work in other ways to stop or minimize bleeding. In response to bleeding from a large blood vessel, platelets release a chemical that stimulates vasoconstriction, which narrows the blood vessel. This not only allows less blood to bleed out from the vessel, but enables a clot to lodge in the narrowed vessel to obstruct the bleeding. When small capillaries are cut or are ruptured, platelets also create a platelet plug to stop the bleeding.
Conditions that can afflict the platelets include thrombocytopenia, thrombocytosis, and chemotherapy.
The following organs are closely related to the organ: Platelets:
The following conditions are related to the organ: Platelets:
The following are other names for the organ: Platelets:
These symptoms are related to afflictions of the organ: Platelets:
Condition count: 3 ; see list below.
Organs: list of all organs
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