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How low % of lymphocytes is cause for concern?
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How low % of lymphocytes is cause for concern?

If 20 - 40% of white blood cells are made up of lymphocytes, and my lab results on last week's CBC w/differential came back with my lymphocytes at 17%, does that mean anything significant?

The always curious

Kathy
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293157_tn?1285877039
sorry can't help...but sure would like to know..??

take care
wobbly
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559187_tn?1330786456
What was the reference range on your lab test?

Julie
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405614_tn?1329147714
Reference 20.0 - 53.0
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559187_tn?1330786456
What was your WBC?  Did they list an absolute lymph count? How were your monocytes?

I have chronic lymphopenia so know a little bit about it.  
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147426_tn?1317269232
nope.  Remember the reference range is for the middle percentiles and values slightly out of those ranges are rarely of note.

Q
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559187_tn?1330786456
I was going to say the same thing.  Nothing to worry about.  
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405614_tn?1329147714
that's what I figured, since everything else was amazingly normal!
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147426_tn?1317269232
Julie and I are on the same page, but my comment should have been more explanatory.

The different WBC types (Neutrophils or Polys, Lymphocytes, Monocytes, Eosinophils, and Basophils) are all reported by their percentages in the blood.  By definition, then, all the numbers must add up to 100%.

So if a person has a bacterial infection, the neutrophils may sky-rocket to more than 90% or so.  This means that the rest of the cell count percents must fall so that the sum is still 100%.

Julie is right that the more critical number is the Absolute count.  This number is achieved by multiplying the percentage of that cell type times the total white cell count.  If the Lymphs are a little low, one would look to the total count and also see if any other type is a higher % than usual.  If the total WBC is very high, like 20,000 (as you would see in some infections, a low lymphocyte count might still have a normal absolute count.

The upshot here is that we can not look at a single number in a CBC and be able to say much about it.  Only by looking at all the numbers do we get a sense that something is ou-of-whack (official medical term).

Quix
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405614_tn?1329147714
Hmm....

Looks like nothing is truly out-of whack

WBC 8.4;   range 3.5 - 11.0

Monocytes 7.1%;   range 1.0 - 10.0

Neutophils 75%;   range 40.0 - 81.0

Lymphocytes  Abs  1.4 ;   range 1.0 - 4.8

Monocytes Abs  0.6;   range 0.0 - 0.8

got tired of typing; pretty much comfortably within normal range.

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