The letter designation of leukocytes in the blood test
At the present time it is very difficult to find a person who has never donated blood for analysis in his life. This process is familiar to everyone, but only a few know the correct interpretation of the results of research conducted in laboratories. Deciphering the content of leukocytes, red blood cells, hemoglobin, or hematocrit is actually not so difficult. The designation of leukocytes in a blood test allows doctors to prescribe the correct therapy.
A very important indicator in the analysis of blood is the concentration of white blood cells - the white blood cells responsible for protecting the human body. Leukocytes directly affect the performance of the immune system, so their quality control makes it possible to judge how good the body's capabilities are in fighting infection.
General information about the study
Leukocytes, or "white cells" (WBC - White Blood Cells - this is the letter designation of leukocytes in the general blood test), are a group of cells that are produced in the bone marrow and lymph nodes.Their main task is the formation of the so-called line of defense against bacteria, viruses, foreign bodies, toxins, waste slags.
For example, one type of leukocyte cell series binds and accumulates pathogenic microorganisms, the other produces antibodies, and the third is responsible for the immune memory, that is, transmits the received information to young cells. A special role is given to cells capable of destroying harmful elements. The designation of leukocytes in the analysis is expressed by the abbreviation WBC and is an indicator of their concentration in the blood.
It is noteworthy that leukocytes, unlike other cells, are able to penetrate from the blood vessels into the area of development of the inflammatory process. Only in the blood is only 1% of cells of the leukocyte series. But such a small concentration does not diminish their importance.
Although it is common practice to call leukocytes "white blood cells", in fact they have a purple-pink color.
If you speak "medical language", then leukocytes are of several types.
Neutrophils (the designation of leukocytes in the blood test with the letters NEUT) is the largest group of leukocytes.They are the first to penetrate the foci of inflammation and try to destroy the bacterial infection. Also, neutrophils fight microbes, toxins and fungi. When infected with pathogenic microbes, the concentration of this type of leukocytes increases 10 times.
Eosinophils (referred to as EO) is the second type of leukocyte cell series, which is formed continuously in the human bone marrow. After maturation, they leave the bone marrow and move through the circulatory system to the tissue, where they destroy proteins that are foreign to the body.
If the indicator of this type is increased (it has the corresponding designation of leukocytes in the blood test), then it means that the body actively fights against harmful microorganisms entering the blood. A decrease in the content of eosinophils in the blood is observed during the course of acute infectious diseases. If, after a long absence in the analysis, they began to appear again, it means that the person begins to recover.
Basophils (referred to as BASO) are the smallest type of leukocyte. But despite this, basophils play an important role when ingested allergen.When identifying the allergen, basophil begins its destruction by releasing biologically active substances in the blood. If allergic reactions occur, this type of indicator is elevated, which is reflected in the general analysis of blood (we have already mentioned the designation of white blood cells of this type). Also, this phenomenon is characteristic of the onset of ovulation or the menstrual cycle in women.
Monocytes(denoted by mono)- considered the largest form of white blood cells. Their main function is joint with neutrophils fight against foreign pathogens. But due to the large size, monocytes are somewhat longer than neutrophils, destroy harmful organisms. An increased concentration of monocytes in the blood indicates the presence of infectious mononucleosis. A low level of this type of leukocyte series is a sign of severe inflammatory, infectious diseases, as well as various lesions of the bone marrow.
Lymphocytes(labeled Lymph) is the most active form of white blood cells involved in building the immune system. They form in the bone marrow and spleen, and then move to the lymph and blood, where they recognize the antigens of a foreign organism, with which they have never met before.This special quality of lymphocytes allows you to create the so-called immunity to previously transferred diseases. In turn, lymphocytes are divided into three types:
- T-lymphocytes: responsible for cellular immunity;
- B-lymphocytes: ensure the formation of antibodies;
- NK lymphocytes: destroy their own cells if they detect infection markers on the surface.
Normal white blood cell count
The index of the content of leukocytes in the blood is different and depends both on the age (for example, in children there are several more immune cells), and on the diet, time of day. But the biological floor does not affect the number of leukocyte cells.
The designation of the leukocyte norm in a blood test (leukogram) of a healthy person should be as follows:
- Neutrophils - 47-72%, of which:
- 45-70% of segmented cores (2.0-4.5 x 10 ^ 9 units / l);
- 1-6% of band-core (0.04-0.3 x 10 ^ 9 u / l).
- Lymphocytes - 19-37% (1.2-3.0 x 10 ^ 9 units / l).
- Monocytes - 3-11% (0.09-0.6 x 10 ^ 9 units / l).
- Eosinophils - 0.5-5% (0-3.0 x 10 ^ 9 u / l).
- Basophils - 0-1% (0-0,065 x 10 ^ 9 units / l).
Please note that the normal rates of all types of leukocyte cells are indicated only for an adult, since for children these figures vary greatly depending on age.You should also not forget that in some clinical laboratories the designation of leukocytes in the blood may be somewhat different.
Elevated white blood cell counts
A condition in which the concentration of cells in the immune system is elevated is called leukocytosis. There are physiological and pathological leukocytosis. The first occurs in almost any person. The designation of leukocytes in a clinical blood test usually does not show the presence of any disease and does not entail health problems.
The temporary form of leukocytosis may be associated with various external factors. For example, in newborns, an increased concentration of white blood cells may occur due to a reaction to a new supplement. In adults, the number of leukocytes can increase as a result of stress, prolonged exposure to the sun, heavy physical exertion, changes in the weather, or even time zones. As a rule, leukocytes in women increase during pregnancy, childbirth or in the premenstrual period.
However, in all these conditions, leukocytes rise slightly, and therefore, it is not necessary to sound the alarm.It is worthwhile to pay more attention to those cases when leukocytes are 2-3 times higher than normal values, since such growth of these cells may indicate the formation of a protective barrier of the body. This suggests the presence of pathological leukocytosis.
Characteristics of leukocytosis
What are the pathologies that are associated with an increase or decrease in performance?
The most common neutrophilic leukocytosis, because the particles of the same name are considered the largest group of leukocytes. This form of leukocytosis is caused by an acute inflammatory process, bacterial infection, blood loss, intoxication, a patient’s shock condition, or myocardial infarction.
An increased number of eosinophil cells always indicates the presence of an allergic reaction, most often to intolerable medications.
Basophilic leukocytosis occurs in women during pregnancy and is considered a normal condition for them. Also the indicator of this type of cells increases with problems with the intestines, stomach, spleen or thyroid gland.
Lymphocytic leukocytosis occurs in people with severe viral infections - hepatitis C, influenza, as well as in tuberculosis.
Monocytic leukocytosis is observed due to the patient's infectious disease, that is, at the stage of recovery.
Low blood leukocyte counts
If the level of leukocytes in the blood is lowered, then it means that the body is difficult to fight against pathogenic microorganisms. This phenomenon always indicates the presence of a disease. Immune blood cells are produced in insufficient quantities due to the following key reasons:
- Deficiency of substances necessary for the formation of young cells. Most often, this condition is accompanied by a decrease in hemoglobin and red blood cells.
- The disappearance of leukocytes. One of the reasons for this phenomenon is the redistribution of these immune cells or their complete destruction due to intoxication.
- The leukocyte count is reduced or completely absent due to bone marrow dysfunction. This condition can occur in the treatment of cancer, poisoning, autoimmune damage.
Leukopenia can still be recognized, in contrast to leukocytosis, which has no specific symptoms.A sign of long-term leukopenia is the occurrence of an infectious disease. In the early days, the body temperature will rise to 38 ° C, there will be a fever and chills. Other symptoms of an infectious disease are not observed.
Obviously, it was not at all difficult to understand the designation of leukocytes in the general analysis of blood. Do not neglect the knowledge gained, it is better to use them for health promotion. And remember that you should not self-medicate, because only a highly qualified doctor can correctly diagnose and prescribe a course of treatment.
We examined the designation of leukocytes in a blood test.