The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society - Fighting Blood Cancers
15 Replies Latest reply: May 4, 2012 1:14 PM by mbrown2010 RSS

Absolute Lymph Count

nathaliece Registered Users
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Hi ,

 

I just got my CBC results and notice a downward trend in my Absolute Lymp Count.  I am PCRU for a couple of months but still have a CBC every three weeks because my hemoglobin and hematocrit counts had been low following surgery.  Here is the trend:

 

2/20/12  ALC 2.24

3/5/12    ALC 2.13

4/3/12    ALC 1.70

4/30/12  ALC 1.20

 

I know the acceptable range is 1-4.8 but I am not sure what this count means and am concerned about the downward trend.  Any information would be greatly appreciated.  If it matters, my hemaglobin and RBC are still below the range but improving.

 

Thanks,

Nat

  • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
    Susan61 Registered Users
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    Hi Nat:  I do not know what your looking at.  You said absolute lymphocytes, and the range is 850 to 3900.  I just got my test results back, and mine are 996.  I cannot find anything on my scale that runs 1 to 4.8.  I also have a constant low HBG, HCT, and RBC.  Look at your blood test again, and let me know what you see.  I am not good with the blood work, but I am looking right at my recent copy.  I even have a posting up looking for some answers on my blood work.

    • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
      nathaliece Registered Users
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      Susan,

       

      It says "Absolute Lymph Count 1.0 - 4.8 K/UL".  My number is 1.2 so it is still in the range but consistently trending downward.  I am not sure what this is or what it means. 

       

      My "lymphocytes 24-44%" are trending downward as well.  This time they were 24.  Previously, they were 33, 32, 40 and 38.

       

      Nathalie

      • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
        Susan61 Registered Users
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        Hi:  It must be the way your lab presents it or something.  I do not get percentages on mine.  What Lab do you have.  I have been looking all over my report for what you are saying, and I still see my Absolute Lymph count in numbers with

        996.  Maybe somebody else can explain this to us.

        Susan

        • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
          momruns Registered Users
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          Greetings,

               My ONC watches my ANC or absolute neutrophil count.  Neutrophil are the white blood cells that help fight infection.  ANC can be calculated by multiplying neutrophil
          percentage by total WBC.  For example, if the total WBC is 3.4 and neutrophil percentage is 43%, ANC will be 3.4 X  0.43 =  1.462.  If ANC goes below 1, it is called neutropenia (low neutrophils) Grade 3.  This is when some doctors may stop therapy. 

               My ANC has been running around 1.3 to 1.5  it went down to 1.0 and 0.8 and both times they held my gleevec.  I do not know about the ALC.  But they let me know my ANC each time I have blood work.

              Does anyone else have chronic low ANC's?

           

          Loreta

    • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
      hannibellemo Registered Users
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      Susan,

       

      I learned something when I first started out on this journey. Normal ranges are based on the area in which you live. There is no universal normal range for blood counts. How often these change I don't know but I think it must be often and the normal ranges for Mayo differ from the normal ranges for my local cancer center.

       

      Thought I would just throw that out there. We truly can't compare ourselves to others in different geographical areas when it comes to CBCs, differentials, etc. I'm assuming Nat's 1 - 4.8 could also be stated as 1,000 to 4800. Not so very different from your normal range.

       

      Pat

      • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
        Susan61 Registered Users
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        Hi Pat:  That is a good subject, because I was just talking to someone about how normal ranges have changed through the years. Using Cholesterol for instance.  Now your numbers are high in a certain range, where as go back so many years and you were in the normal range with the values they used.

             I just posted yesterday on my recent blood test abnormals, and we now have our eGFR showing along with our bun/creatinine for our kidneys.  I am not sure, but I think its only so many years ago that I noticed a eGFR on my blood work. I had no idea what it was at first.  Who knows what my filtration rate was before they started to print it.

            I am just trying to keep calm when I see these numbers jumping all over the place.  I just know what the important numbers are to always look for.  Like you said normal ranges vary where you live.

        • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
          pamsouth Registered Users
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          Susan, I was just thinking that Glucose high range use to be not over 120, then it was 110 and now it is 100. 

          I remember the first time I saw my kick out high when it was just a little over 100 then I realized they had lowered the range again.  I don’t know if has anything to do with age or just that they have changed the way they calculate.  My close usually run around 95 to 105.  I don’t worry about it to much as sometimes I forget to fast before I go, as not running cholesterol and the onc doesn’t mention anything about fasting.  However my husband has diabetes II and if he check his counts in the morning after a long fast they are usually lower or normal, then if he take his glucose test 2 hours after an evening meal and snack.  Most of the time he doesn’t need his medicine, he controls it with his diet and walking.

           

          PamSouth

          • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
            hannibellemo Registered Users
            Currently Being Moderated

            Glucose high range is still 110 where I live, Pam. Again, the range is determined by the area in which we live.

             

            Pat

            • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
              Susan61 Registered Users
              Currently Being Moderated

              Hi Pat:  Hope your feeling better.  I just looked at the reference ranges on my blood work.

              Glucose Fasting    Should be between  65- 99

              Reg. Glucose           "          "     "           65 - 139

              Why is it different in various areas? My other thing is that my husband and I stopped using our monitors to check our sugar.  We always had trouble with them, and had to keep getting a new one.  You could check it and get a 300 just as an example, and then wait 10 minutes to re-check and it would be down to 110 or something.  I just never trusted them to be accurate.  My husband sees a Endocrinologist for his Diabetes, and his doctor said he does not even rely on the

              A 1 Test that you do every few months.  He said you could have one bad week, and it can throw all the numbers off.

              I think a 6 is considered normal, and if his result is a 8 lets say the doctor is not even concerned, but our primary doctor is so strict with how she watches the counts.  All this can surely make a person crazy.

              • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
                Sneezy12 Registered Users
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                Lab values for some tests may differ from area to area, depending on the Lab standards, not the area. Frank

              • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
                hannibellemo Registered Users
                Currently Being Moderated

                Hi, Susan,

                 

                That's what I meant when I said there is no universal normal range for blood tests. For instance, I'm looking at my last Mayo blood tests and my most recent local cancer center blood tests and here are a few of examples.

                 

                                                                           Mayo                                                      MCC

                WBC                                               3.5 - 10.5                                                4.5 - 11

                HGB                                               12 - 15.5                                                  11.7 - 16

                RBC                                                3.9 - 5.03                                                 3.8 - 5.3

                Glucose                                          70 - 100                                                  70 - 110

                 

                For all intents and purposes these numbers are the same from each institution, but they do vary, if not widely. One reason for the difference is that all laboratories should have their own ranges to account for the instruments used in their laboratory and another is the characteristics of the population of the area are taken into account. Mason City has an older population than Rochester so perhaps that accounts for the higher glucose reference range.

                 

                I just thought it was interesting when I saw that the two labs had different reference ranges and I asked about it.

                 

                Pat

  • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
    Trey Registered Users
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    Nothing wrong with your lymphocyte counts.  They tend to go into lower levels (like a motor idling) until needed, then they rev up.  If you want to get them up, go walk around in a hospital and breathe other people's germs in deeply.

    • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
      mbrown2010 Registered Users
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      So what does it mean if your lymphocytes are always high? Just a sign of your body trying to fight the CML?

      Melanie

      • Re: Absolute Lymph Count
        Trey Registered Users
        Currently Being Moderated

        First, make sure that you are looking at the absolute number, not the percentages.  High lymphocyte percentages are only in relation to the other WBCs, so when the neutrophil percentage is low, the lymphocyte percentage almost always will be high, which is meaningless.  This is because the percentages need to add up to 100%.  If the absolute lymphocyte number is always high, that would be unusual and further testing should look for a cause.  The lymphocytes (T-cells, B-cells, NK-cells) generally do not fight the leukemia because they see the leukemic cells as part of the body, not as intruders.  Lymphocytes attack cells they believe to be intruders. 

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