Megakaryocyte cytoplasmic volumes were studied in 13 subjects 18 +/- 2 days after admittance to the coronary care unit. Seven had suffered a myocardial infarction (MI group) while six had chest pain but no recent infarction. Megakaryocytes were also studied in 10 subjects suffering coronary sudden unexpected death (CSD group) and 11 subjects suffering sudden unexpected un-natural death. There was no significant difference between the megakaryocyte cytoplasmic volume distributions of the MI and CSD groups, although they had a significantly greater mean (p less than 0.01) and range (p less than 0.001) than their respective control groups. There was no significant difference in platelet volumes observed within 24 hr of the infarct and 18 +/- 2 days later. Mean platelet volume was significantly correlated (r = 0.89, p less than 0.006) to mean megakaryocyte cytoplasmic volume in the MI group. A computer simulation of platelet production showed no significant difference between platelet volumes observed in the MI group and those estimated to be circulating before death in the CSD group.