Hematology in the post-COVID era: spotlight on vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia and a conceptual framework (the 4P’s) for anti-PF4 diseases Journal Articles uri icon

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  • INTRODUCTION: Vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT) is a life-threatening prothrombotic disorder first identified following the introduction of adenoviral vector vaccines for COVID-19. The condition is characterized by anti-PF4 antibodies and clinically presents with thrombocytopenia and thrombosis often in unusual anatomical sites. AREAS COVERED: In this review, we discuss the clinical presentation, diagnostic testing, and treatment of VITT. We also review VITT-like syndromes that have been described in patients without previous vaccination. We propose a conceptual framework for the mechanism of anti-PF4 diseases that includes sufficiently high levels of PF4, the presence of a Polyanion that can form immune complexes with PF4, a Pro-inflammatory milieu, and an immunological Predisposition - the 4Ps. EXPERT OPINION: Significant progress has been made in understanding the characteristics of the VITT antibody and in testing methods that can confirm that diagnosis. Future work should be directed at understanding long-term outcomes, mechanisms of thrombosis, and individual risk factors for this rare but dangerous immune-thrombotic disease.


  • Gabarin, Nadia
  • Hack, Michael
  • Revilla, Ryan
  • Arnold, Donald
  • Nazy, Ishac

publication date

  • March 3, 2024