What is a CBC Test?
A complete blood count (CBC) is a group of tests performed in a medical laboratory with the purpose of getting detailed information about the cells in a person’s blood. The CBC is generally performed as a segment of a whole medical assessment and is used to monitor health or diagnose diseases. If there are any abnormal increases or decreases in cell counts detected, it might be a red flag for an underlying medical condition that calls for further assessment.
It is basically a blood test which evaluates your overall health and is capable of detecting a huge number of disorders. To name some, anaemia, infection and leukaemia are the major ones which can be detected by taking a CBC test. Several parts and components of your body are measured in a proper CBC test, some of them being:
- Red blood cells, which carry oxygen
- White blood cells, which fight infection
- The oxygen carrying protein, Hemoglobin present in red blood cells
- The proportion of red blood cells to the fluid component, or plasma, Haematocrit found in your blood
- Platelets, which help with blood clotting
What are reasons which make you get a CBC test done?
A complete blood count is a very common procedure done for a variety of reasons, some of which are listed below:
- Overall health review: Doctors recommend a complete blood count test whenever you visit them for a general check-up in order to check if your general health is just right and also do a screening to detect disorders such as leukaemia or anaemia.
- Diagnosis of a medical condition: If you have any unusual symptoms or extremes of regular ones like weakness, fatigue, fever, inflammation, bruising or bleeding, you might have to get a CBC test done. This will help your doctor diagnose the reason behind these symptoms and even if the doctor already suspects something, it might help give a better understanding.
- Monitor a pre-existing medical condition: If you’ve been already been tested positive for a particular blood disorder that affects blood cell counts, your doctor may take into account complete blood counts to monitor your condition.
- Monitor an on-going medical treatment: If you are on medications which take a toll on your blood cell count, getting a CBC test done once in a while is very necessary to monitor your body health.
What does a CBC test Inculdes?
The complete blood count (CBC) is an accumulation of tests that evaluate the cells circulating in the blood. Mostly, blood cells are produced in the bone marrow and once they mature they are released into the bloodstream as needed.
There are three types of cells which CBC evaluates:
Red Blood Cells
Red blood cells, are medically called erythrocytes. They are produced in the bone marrow and once they mature, they are let into the bloodstream. They are the storehouse of haemoglobin. A RBC lives for 120 days and this is why bone marrow is responsible producing new RBCs to replace those that age and degrade or are lost through bleeding. In case this fails to happen, your body will give you warning signs, as in, significant bleeding.
For example, anaemia occurs due to fallen red blood cell counts and low haemoglobin. Anaemia is pretty dangerous and there are various diseases which lead to it. Therefore, additional tests are often needed to determine the cause.
White Blood Cells
In medical terminology, White blood cells are called leukocytes. They are found predominantly in the blood, the lymphatic system, and tissues. They are an important part as they constitute the body’s natural defence (immune) system
WBCs are usually in stable numbers in the blood. However, these numbers have chances of deflecting up or down temporarily, considering what is going on in the body. In certain diseases, such as leukaemia, abnormal (immature or mature) white cells may rapidly multiply. These extreme circumstances demand tests to be done without fail.
Platelets are medically called thrombocytes. They are very tiny cell fragments that circulate in blood and are essential for normal blood clotting. If you have a disease or condition that reduces platelets (thrombocytopenia) or misbehaving of platelets, you may be at an increased risk of excessive bleeding and bruising. An excess of platelets leads to the condition thrombocytosis, which can cause excessive clotting
What is included in a CBC?
A CBC test is automated mostly, generally performed using an instrument that measures all the various parameters involved, including cell counts and the physical features of some of the cells. A standard CBC includes:
Red blood cell (RBC) tests:
- Red blood cell (RBC) count which is the count of the actual number of red blood cells in your blood sample.
- Measures the quantity of Haemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying protein in the blood, responsible for the number of red blood cells in the blood.
- Measures the percentage of your total blood volume that consists of red blood cells, Haematocrit.
- The indices taken of Red blood cell give away information on the physical features of the RBCs:
- Details of the average size of your red blood cells, medically known as Mean corpuscular volume (MCV)
- Details of the average amount of haemoglobin inside your red blood cells, medically termed Mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH)
- Details of the calculated measurement of the average concentration of haemoglobin inside your red blood cells., medically known as Mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC).
- Details of the Red cell distribution width (RDW) which is a measurement of the variation in the size of your red blood cells.
White blood cell (WBC) tests:
- Gives the total count of White blood cell (WBC) in your blood sample.
- Provides information about the White blood cell differential which can be used to identify and count the number of the five types of white blood cells present (neutrophils, lymphocytes, monocytes, eosinophils, and basophils).
- Gives the total count of the number of platelets in your blood sample.
- The measurement of the average size of platelets, mean platelet volume (MPV) may be reported with a CBC.
- Platelet distribution width (PDW) which reflects how uniform platelets are in size, may also be reported with a CBC.
When is it Done?
You may get a CBC performed when
- You go for your routine health examination.
- If you feel you are ill and are showing signs and symptoms which seem related to conditions that affect blood cells. in simple words, you have fatigue or weakness, or easy bruising or bleeding, an infection or inflammation.
- To know where you and your body stand with respect to a disease you have been diagnosed with which affects blood cells.
- To check if the treatment you are taking to cure a blood related disorder is working or not
- To keep an eye on the drug treatments if you are undergoing serious procedures such as chemotherapy or even if you are under some medications which can affect blood cell production.
Why Delhi Health Labs?
When it comes to health, nobody wants to compromise. We demand the best facility and accurate treatment and results. We at Delhi Health Labs provide exactly the same for each and every customer who bestows their trust in us. We know you are looking for the best facilities at affordable rates and we strive each day to make it work just the way you want. Our test results and procedures are certified and can be totally trusted upon.
We aim at delivering elite services to our patients and we promise to not let you go unsatisfied. We provide services at your doorstep so you can forget about your cranky hospital trips all together. If you wish to have a hassle-free experience, you will choose us again and again. We perform everything required in a CBC test as per protocol and the results are delivered without delay. We have minimal prices for our tests, such that everybody can afford it. All of this makes us your first and last choice.