Bacterial and protozoal infections can cause thrombocytopenia and may mimic idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). Brucella species and Toxoplasma are among the infectious agents with protean clinical manifestations which may induce immune thrombocytopenia. In rare cases, thrombocytopenia can be severe and may result bleeding into the skin and from mucosal sites. Prompt recognition of this complication and aggressive therapy are essential, since the mortality associated with bleeding into the central nervous system is high. We report two patients with complaints of severe epistaxis and thrombocytopenia associated with brucellosis and toxoplasmosis. Thrombocytopenic purpura in these cases responded well to the high-dose corticosteroid treatment with platelet recovery within 2-3 days. For cases with infection-induced immune thrombocytopenic purpura, short-term high-dose corticosteroids may be applied as an urgent therapy without worsening of the clinical condition. (C) 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.