Doctor insights on:
32 White Blood Cell Count
My white blood cell count was 6.25... Is this normal or low? Is it okay to take prednisone for poison ivy with this WBC count?
Could be anything: How do you FEEL? Reference ranges are set so that a few percent of healthies fall outside on either end. This is worrisome if, and only if, you feel sick or there are abnormally-shaped white cells. After a cold swim, the white count may rise as high as 20,000. Best wishes. ...Read more
Leukopenia: Recent infection such as flu, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, aplastic anemia, hiv, lupus, hodgkin's lymphoma, cancer, typhoid, malaria, tb, sepsis, folate deficiency, copper & zinc deficiency, medications such as wellbutrin, (bupropion) depakote, lamictal, clozapine, minocycline, flagyl, interferone, arsenic toxicity. ...Read more
HIGH WBC >10.5k: A normal white blood count (WBC) is in the range: 4k--10.5k (4000-10, 500) in most labs around the country. So any WBC >10.5k is elevated. I see elevated wbc's all the time, so I recommend following it closely (perhaps rechecking in 1 month with 'a differential') . If you have symptoms of a blood disorder you may need further testing, now. ...Read more
Depends on how low the count is and what other symptoms and signs are associated with it and what caused the low count. A common risk is propensity to infections. See this site for more info.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/low-white-blood-cell-count/my00162. ...Read more
Primary or secondary blood disorder, infection, immunologic diseases, medication, and many other possibilities.
Most causes would be treatable.
If this has been confirmed then consultation with a hematologist would be appropriate. ...Read more
Depends: The primary purpose of white blood cells (wbcs) is to fight infection. So, people with low white blood cell counts could be more susceptible to infections. However, it depends on why the wbcs are low. Some people simply have low WBC counts and live normal lives. Others could have an underlying problem causing the low counts. ...Read more
Many causes.: Low WBC can be due to nutritional factors, infections (esp. Viral infections), autoimmune diseases, inhereted defects, leukemias and other bone marrow cancers, meylodysplasia, drug reactions, and even unknown causes. The problem with this is infection, but the risk depends on how low the WBC is. Only with very low WBC is there a risk of death. ...Read more
There are many.: Infections can sometimes cause low white blood cells — surprising to many because most people think of a high WBC in that case, but overwhelming bacterial infections can lead to depletion of wbcs. Viruses can also destroy wbcs temporarily. Certain medicines and drugs can cause low white blood counts and auto-immune diseases (where the body's immune system attacks itself) are another cause. ...Read more
Immature cells: Bands are the immature white blood cells, their presence can mean many things, but we typically find them elevated in acute infection, in the sense that in an acute infection your bone marrow is pumping out so many white blood cells to fight infection that it start pumping out immature ones "bands". ...Read more
4,000 - 10,000: This is somewhat dependent on ethnicity. The normal range for caucasions is 4, 000 – 10, 000/ cubic millimeter. People of color (blacks and asians) tend to have a lower wbc, and their normal may go down to 3, 000. The most prevelent WBC is a neutrophil, and there should be at least 1500 neutrophils for all ethnicities. ...Read more
All laboratory results need to be interpreted in the clinical context and the doctor who ordered the tests is usually in the best position to do that. Having said that, your count is on the high end or normal. It is not bad in itself.
For good health — Have a diet rich in fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low fat milk and milk products, nuts, beans, legumes, lentils and small amounts of lean meats. Avoid saturated fats. Exercise at least 150 minutes/week and increase the intensity of exercise gradually. Do not use tobacco, alcohol, weed or street drugs in any form.
Practice safe sex. ...Read more
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