Why is a Complete Blood Count blood test important?

The Complete Blood Count (CBC) laboratory test is an effective screening tool to identify different hematological abnormalities such as anemia, nutritional deficiencies, blood clotting issues, infection and blood cancer.  A CBC is the go-to test to analyze the three main types of cells within the blood: red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Red blood cells contain a molecule called hemoglobin that carries oxygen from the lungs to the body’s tissues. A CBC shows the number of red blood cells, their size and shape, and the concentration of hemoglobin within each cell. Red blood cells can be low if a person has been losing blood or if they have anemia (low hemoglobin levels). If you are diagnosed with anemia, your doctor will then order more specific tests to determine if your anemia is the result of recent blood loss, low iron levels, or a vitamin B12 or folic acid deficiency.

The white blood cells are a key player in the body’s immune system, defending you against potentially harmful organisms. A CBC gives a total white cell count and the percentages of the different types of white cells, which can help your doctor determine what sort of infection your body is fighting (bacterial, parasitic, etc.). Additionally, leukemia, which is a cancer of the bone marrow, can be diagnosed if abnormal white cells are present in the blood.

A blood platelet count in the normal range is necessary to ensure the blood clots as it should, preventing excessive blood loss from injuries or surgery.

You can order your own lab tests online at HealthOneLabs.com, including a CBC.   We provide the doctor’s order and all fees are inclusive.   When you get your CBC blood lab tests results online, the report will indicate if you have normal or abnormal increases or decreases in cell counts which could indicate that you have an underlying medical condition that calls for further evaluation.

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