Observed year after year on the last Friday of the month of September, Sport Purple for Platelets Day truly supports all patients suffering from Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), a disorder marked by a decrease in the number of platelets in the blood. In turn, this causes excessive bleeding, bruising, and fatigue. Platelets are the cells that allow the blood to clot.
The Platelet Disorder Support Association (PDSA) is the sponsoring body of this awareness day and the many ensuing efforts and events. The money raised is devoted to educating people on a range of aspects concerning ITP: first, and probably most importantly, enlightening people as to what it is, because, let’s face it, most of us had never heard of this disease before; secondly, informing the public on how to detect it, live with it, causes and probable cures; lastly, showing support through a number of initiatives, including donating and raising more capital through fundraisers.
Chromatically, purple represents bravery. Being the perfect blend of blue —which represents the enormity of the skies and the ocean, and is therefore calm, wisdom, and informs peace— and red —the fiery color that symbolizes exuberant vitality, love and, well, blood (although many still believe it is blue)— purple is the beautiful energy and power to uplift.
However, vis-a-vis the autoimmune disease of thrombocytopenia, it spells out the color of the spontaneous bruise, one of ITP’s most common symptoms.
Facts of ITP
- It was one of the first autoimmune diseases*, discovered as far back as 1735
- It is more prevalent in women, to the tune of twice as much
- It lowers life expectancy, as much as 20 years in the worst of cases
- It can be caused by viral infections
- It has been linked to some vaccines, such as MMR and HPV
* Autoimmune diseases are those where your own antibodies attack your tissues.
Observing Sport Purple for PlateletsSM can be done by:
- Organizing a fundraiser. The PDSA has raised $700,000 to date.
- Lighting up the night with purple bulbs and lights in homes, porches, bridges, skyscrapers, public buildings, etc.
- Furthering the cause on social media, making it viral with these hashtags:
- Wearing purple clothing, purple accessories, using purple pens, etc., so any curious soul may inquire and its significance be carried forward.