- What Is a Complete Blood Count Test?
- CBC Test Normal Range
- What Does a CBC Measure?
- CBC Test Procedure
- What Happens During a CBC Test?
- What are the Different Conditions Detected by a CBC?
- Easy Interpretation of CBC Values
- What do the CBC Test Reports Indicate?
Bajaj Finserv Health
November 17, 20217 mins read
- A CBC test measures various components present in your blood
- The CBC test normal range of hemoglobin varies between 11.5–17 g/dL
- You can get your CBC values within 24 hours of sample collection
With a complete blood count or CBC test, you can assess your health conditions and detect infections. This test measures various components present in your blood such as red blood cells (RBC), platelets, white blood cells (WBC), hemoglobin, and hematocrit.
Red blood cells help by transporting oxygen and white blood cells are essential for your body as they fight pathogens. While platelets aid in the blood clotting mechanism, the hemoglobin in red blood cells is the protein that carries oxygen. The hematocrit evaluation determines the number of red blood cells in proportion to the plasma in your blood.
What Is a Complete Blood Count Test?
A complete blood count (CBC) is a blood test used to evaluate your overall health and detect a wide range of disorders, including anemia, infection, and leukemia.
The CBC is one of the most common blood tests performed and is often used as a general indicator of your health. It can also be used to help diagnose and monitor a wide range of conditions, such as anemia, infection, and leukemia.
If there is an abnormal result in your test when compared against the normal CBC values, it may indicate an ailment that requires further evaluation.
Getting a CBC test done is essential for the following reasons:
- To check if you are suffering from any infection
- To monitor a disease
- To assess your overall health parameters
- To track the treatment procedure you are undergoing
Doctors also prescribe this test if you have the following symptoms:
- Pain in joints
- Bleeding or bruises
- Body inflammation
- Increase in blood pressure or heartbeat
CBC Test Normal Range
The CBC can help give your doctor an idea of your overall health and whether or not you have an infection or other condition.
Normal CBC values will vary depending on your age, gender, and race. However, in general, a normal CBC will have the following values:
- Red blood cells: 4.5-5.5 million/microliter
- White blood cells: 4,000-10,000/microliter
- Platelets: 150,000-400,000/microliter
If your CBC values are outside the normal range, it does not necessarily mean you are sick. However, it is something that your doctor will want to investigate further.
What Does a CBC Measure?
A CBC (complete blood count) is a blood test that provides information about the different types of cells in your blood, as well as the level of hemoglobin, or oxygen-carrying protein, in your red blood cells. 
The CBC is often used as a routine screening test to check your overall health. It can also be used to help diagnose conditions such as anemia, infection, and leukemia.
Here's a closer look at what the CBC can measure:
Red blood cells:
The CBC can measure the number and size of your red blood cells, as well as the level of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the protein that carries oxygen to your cells.
White blood cells:
The CBC can measure the number of white blood cells in your blood. White blood cells are part of your immune system and help fight off infection.
The CBC can measure the number of platelets in your blood. Platelets are cells that help with blood clotting.
The CBC is generally a quick and painless test. A small amount of blood is drawn from a vein in your arm and sent to a laboratory for analysis.The results of your CBC can provide valuable information about your overall health and help to diagnose conditions such as anemia, infection, and leukemia.
Read on to understand more about this test and normal CBC values present in a healthy individual.
Additional read: Blood Group Test
CBC Test Procedure
For a complete blood count test, there is no need to fast. You can drink and eat as usual before going for the test. Your blood sample is taken after inserting the needle in your vein and then is sent for analysis to the laboratory. It is normal to feel soreness in your arm from where the blood has been extracted. In some cases, you may feel slightly dizzy after a CBC test. With the help of this blood sample, a wide range of health ailments can be detected. This helps in early diagnosis and ensures that proper medical treatment is provided on time.
Remember, to compute different kinds of WBCs, doctors recommend CBC test with differential. A CBC test without differential includes only the total count of WBCs.
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What Happens During a CBC Test?
The CBC is usually done as part of a routine physical exam, but it can also be used to screen for various medical conditions.
The test measures the following:
Red blood cells:
These cells carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. A low red blood cell count (anemia) can be caused by bleeding, iron deficiency, or certain diseases.
White blood cells:
These cells fight infection. A high white blood cell count may be a sign of infection, inflammation, or leukemia.
Hemoglobin and hematocrit:
Hemoglobin is the iron-containing protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen to the body's tissues. Hematocrit is the percentage of red blood cells in the blood. Low hemoglobin or hematocrit may be a sign of anemia.
These cells help the blood clot. A low platelet count can be a sign of certain blood disorders, such as leukemia or aplastic anemia.
The CBC is usually done with a blood sample taken from a vein in your arm, but it can also be done with a finger prick or from a blood spot on a filter paper.
The test is usually quick and painless, and the results are usually available within a few days.
What are the Different Conditions Detected by a CBC?
Here are the different types of health conditions that can be determined by a CBC.
- Deficiency of minerals and vitamins
- Disorders affecting bone marrow
- Infections causing a decrease or increase in WBCs
- Cancers like lymphoma or leukemia
- Allergies due to medicines
Easy Interpretation of CBC Values
You can get the test results within 24 hours of sample collection. However, if the value exceeds the CBC test normal range, your doctor may order additional tests. The CBC normal range is actually a reference range mentioned in your report. Any value that exceeds this reference range is considered abnormal and requires medical intervention.
CBC values differ for men and women. When it comes to WBC normal range, females and males should have a count within 3500-10500 cells/mL. The complete blood count normal range of hemoglobin is between 11.5 and 15.5g/dL in women, while the total count normal value in men is between 13-17 g/dL. Refer to a complete blood count normal ranges chart to monitor the result yourself.
What do the CBC Test Reports Indicate?
Your test report will contain two columns that include reference range and your value. If your CBC values fall within reference range, it is considered normal. However, if your results are lower or higher than reference values, it points to something abnormal. If your RBCs, hematocrit and hemoglobin values are low, it may be a hint that you are suffering from anemia. A low WBC count may indicate leukopenia, while a low platelet count means you have thrombocytopenia. If your platelet count is high, it indicates thrombocytosis.
Additional read: Know When Your WBC Count is High or Low?
While a complete blood count test is not a definitive way to diagnose a medical problem, it helps your doctor understand your condition. On the basis of your CBC values, a treatment plan can be devised. If required, you may be asked to undergo certain additional tests as well. Book health tests on Bajaj Finserv Health and monitor your vitals regularly. You don’t have to step out as blood samples are collected right from home! With the provision of online reports, you can access your test results from the convenience of your home. So, get checked on time and address your health issues right away.
Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.
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|Hemoglobin (g/dL)||13.6 to 16.9||11.9 to 14.8|
|Hematocrit (%)||40 to 50||35 to 43|
|RBC count (×106/microL)||4.2 to 5.7||3.8 to 5.0|
|MCV (fL)||82.5 to 98|
Some of the most common diseases a CBC detects include anemia, autoimmune disorders, bone marrow disorders, dehydration, infections, inflammation, leukemia, lymphoma, myeloproliferative neoplasms, myelodysplastic syndrome, sickle cell disease, thalassemia, nutritional deficiencies (e.g., Iron, B12 or folate), and ...How do you explain CBC results? ›
A CBC includes the number of platelets and the mean platelet volume (MPV). MPV is a measurement of the average size of the platelets. A higher MPV roughly indicates better platelet function. Some medical conditions are associated with a high MPV and some are associated with a low MPV.What does CBC show in lymphoma? ›
Complete blood count (CBC).
This test measures the number of blood cells in a sample, including red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. A low level of red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets may indicate that the lymphoma is present in the bone marrow and/or blood.
- The number and size of red blood cells (these cells carry oxygen)
- The number of white blood cells (these cells help fight infection)
- Total amount of hemoglobin and amount per red blood cell (this protein carries oxygen in red blood cells)
A typical routine blood test is the complete blood count, also called CBC, to count your red and white blood cells as well as measure your hemoglobin levels and other blood components. This test can uncover anemia, infection, and even cancer of the blood.Would a CBC show anything serious? ›
The results of a CBC can reveal a number of health conditions to your doctor, from anemia and some types of cancer to vitamin and mineral deficiencies. Other reasons your doctor may order a CBC can include: If you are ill and have a fever or if he or she suspects any kind of infection.What do doctors look for in a CBC blood test? ›
The CBC test identifies and counts the 7 types of cells found in the blood, red blood cell, neutrophil, eosinophil, basophil, lymphocyte, monocyte, and platelet. Sickle cell anemia is an inherited blood disease in which the red blood cells produce abnormal pigment (hemoglobin).Can CBC detect any disease? ›
A complete blood count (CBC) is a blood test. It's used to look at overall health and find a wide range of conditions, including anemia, infection and leukemia. A complete blood count test measures the following: Red blood cells, which carry oxygen.What cancers are detected by blood tests? ›
- Hodgkin lymphoma.
- Non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
- Multiple myeloma.
Blood tests for diagnosing kidney disease
Following are a variety of blood tests that help determine whether or not you have kidney disease: CBC – complete blood count of your red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets—low CBC level can mean kidney function is reduced.
An electrolyte panel is a blood test that measures the levels of seven electrolytes in your blood. Certain conditions, including dehydration, cardiovascular disease and kidney disease, can cause electrolyte levels to become too high or low.What does leukemia look like on a CBC? ›
Leukemia is most often diagnosed through a diagnostic test called a complete blood count (CBC). If a patient's CBC shows abnormal levels of white blood cells or abnormally low red blood cells or platelets, he or she has leukemia.What are signs of leukemia in blood work? ›
Your doctor will conduct a complete blood count (CBC) to determine if you have leukemia. This test may reveal if you have leukemic cells. Abnormal levels of white blood cells and abnormally low red blood cell or platelet counts can also indicate leukemia.What were your first signs of leukemia? ›
- Fever or chills.
- Persistent fatigue, weakness.
- Frequent or severe infections.
- Losing weight without trying.
- Swollen lymph nodes, enlarged liver or spleen.
- Easy bleeding or bruising.
- Recurrent nosebleeds.
- Tiny red spots in your skin (petechiae)
Complete blood count results can help a cardiologist detect complications of the pumping organ of the human body. CBC is used as a tool to detect CHF (Congestive Heart Failure) since it can diagnose anaemia which is known to induce CHF and create similar symptoms of CHF.Will doctors call if your results are bad? ›
Do healthcare providers call you if test results show bad news? They may. If results are concerning, they may call you or have a receptionist call to schedule an appointment. 7 A healthcare provider may also call to assure you everything is okay or discuss any needed follow-up tests.Does CBC blood test include thyroid? ›
A CBC is done to check your general health. Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroid antibodies are measured to check how well the thyroid is working.What are the 3 main blood tests? ›
A blood test is typically composed of three main tests: a complete blood count, a metabolic panel and a lipid panel. Each test for different things, which can be understood through a detailed analysis of the results.What blood tests detect heart problems? ›
- Cardiac enzyme tests (including troponin tests) – these help diagnose or exclude a heart attack.
- Full blood count (FBC) – this measures different types of blood levels and can show, for example, if there is an infection or if you have anaemia.
Negative or normal, which means the disease or substance being tested was not found. Positive or abnormal, which means the disease or substance was found. Inconclusive or uncertain, which means there wasn't enough information in the results to diagnose or rule out a disease.What cancers are detected by CBC? ›
In cancer care, a CBC is used to: Help diagnose some blood cancers, such as leukemia and lymphoma. Find out if cancer has spread to bone marrow. See how your body is being affected by cancer treatment.Would most cancers show up in a CBC? ›
Aside from leukemia, most cancers cannot be detected in routine blood work, such as a CBC test. However, specific blood tests are designed to identify tumor markers, which are chemicals and proteins that may be found in the blood in higher quantities than normal when cancer is present.Does CBC show vitamin D deficiency? ›
A CBC helps health professionals check any symptoms, such as fatigue, weakness, or bruising, that you may have. A CBC also helps diagnose conditions such as anemia, infection, and many other disorders. Vitamin D 25-Hydroxy Blood Test - is often ordered for individuals with a vitamin D deficiency.What does it mean when your blood test shows inflammation? ›
Blood tests known as 'inflammatory markers' can detect inflammation in the body, caused by many diseases including infections, auto-immune conditions and cancers. The tests don't identify what's causing the inflammation: it might be as simple as a viral infection, or as serious as cancer.Does CBC show blood sugar? ›
It also reports on health markers that indicate liver and kidney function. This panel contains the following tests: Blood Sugar: Fasting glucose.How quickly will doctor call with blood test results? ›
Blood test results
The results are sent back to the hospital or to your GP. Some test results will be ready the same day or a few days later, although others may not be available for a few weeks. You'll be told when your results will be ready and how you'll be given them.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis.
- Ankylosing Spondylitis.
- Psoriatic Arthritis.
- Systemic Sclerosis.
- Giant Cell Arteritis.
- Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis.
- Microscopic Polyangiitis.
- Eosinophilic Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis.
Unlike several difficult and invasive tests, a CBC is a simple, inexpensive and easily available test. CBC inflammation markers, including WBC, N, L, NLR, PLR, and MPV, which were evaluated at the sixth gestational week, can be used for the risk assessment of spontaneous abortion in pregnancy.Do all cancers show up in blood work? ›
Aside from leukemia, a broad term for cancers of the blood cells, most cancers cannot be detected during routine blood work. However, blood tests can provide helpful information about: Overall health. Organ function.
- Alpha Fetoprotein (AFP) Tumor Marker Test.
- Beta 2 Microglobulin (B2M) Tumor Marker Test.
- BRAF Genetic Test.
- BRCA Genetic Test.
- Breast Biopsy.
- CA 19-9 Blood Test (Pancreatic Cancer)
- CA-125 Blood Test (Ovarian Cancer)
- Calcitonin Test.
The only way you can find out if you or a loved one has diabetes is from blood tests that measure you blood glucose (sugar) levels. These can be arranged through your GP. A diagnosis of diabetes is always confirmed by laboratory results. You'll usually get the results of your blood test back in a few days.What color is urine when your kidneys are failing? ›
When your kidneys are failing, a high concentration and accumulation of substances lead to brown, red, or purple urine. Studies suggest the urine color is due to abnormal protein or sugar as well as high numbers of cellular casts and red and white blood cells.What are the signs that something is wrong with your kidneys? ›
- Loss of appetite.
- Fatigue and weakness.
- Sleep problems.
- Urinating more or less.
- Decreased mental sharpness.
- Muscle cramps.
A CBC test shows the level of white blood cells and red blood cells in the blood, among other components. A CBC test can indicate a possible infection related to pancreatitis. However, a full blood count alone is not enough to diagnose pancreatitis.What are 3 warning signs of dehydration? ›
- feeling thirsty and lightheaded.
- a dry mouth.
- having dark coloured, strong-smelling urine.
- passing urine less often than usual.
When your body becomes low on electrolytes, it can impair your body's functions, such as blood clotting, muscle contractions, acid balance, and fluid regulation. Your heart is a muscle, so that means electrolytes help regulate your heartbeat.What can I drink to hydrate besides water? ›
- Tea. Tea has the same hydration effect as water and is overloaded with antioxidants to help your body get rid of toxins. ...
- Fruits juice. ...
- Vegetables juice. ...
- Sparkling water. ...
- Infused water.
What causes lymphocytosis? High lymphocyte blood levels often indicate your body is dealing with an infection or other inflammatory condition. A spike in your lymphocytes typically means that these white blood cells are springing into action to rid your body of an invader that can make you sick.What is a normal blood count for a woman? ›
Hemoglobin (Hgb, Hb): 12.6 to 17.5 grams per deciliter (g/dL) for males; 12.0 to 16 g/dL for females. Hematocrit (HCT): 38% to 47.7% White blood cell (WBC) count: 3,300 to 8,700 cells per cubic millimeter (thousand/mm3) Platelet (PLT) count: 150,000 to 450,000 per cubic millimeter (thousand/mm3)
At the time of diagnosis, patients can have very, very high white blood cell counts. Typically a healthy person has a white blood cell count of about 4,000-11,000. Patients with acute or even chronic leukemia may come in with a white blood cell count up into the 100,000-400,000 range.What is the first stage of leukemia? ›
Stage 1 – A patient has high levels of white blood cells and enlarged lymph nodes. Stage 2 – A patient has high levels of white blood cells and is anemic. He or she may also have enlarged lymph nodes. Stage 3 – A patient has high levels of white blood cells and is anemic.What part of the body does leukemia generally affect? ›
Leukemia starts in the soft, inner part of the bones (bone marrow), but often moves quickly into the blood. It can then spread to other parts of the body, such as the lymph nodes, spleen, liver, central nervous system and other organs.Would leukemia show up on a routine blood test? ›
Doctors may find chronic leukemia in a routine blood test, before symptoms begin. If this happens, or if you have signs or symptoms that suggest leukemia, you may undergo the following diagnostic exams: Physical exam.When should you suspect leukemia? ›
When is a patient tested for leukemia? "A patient may be tested for leukemia if he or she has unexplained weight loss, night sweats or fatigue, or if he or she bruises or bleeds easily," Dr. Siddon says. "Sometimes routine blood work shows an unexplained elevated number of white blood cells."What age is leukemia most common? ›
Age: The risk of most leukemias increases with age. The median age of a patient diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) or chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is 65 years and older. However, most cases of acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) occur in people under 20 years old.What can be mistaken for leukemia? ›
- Pathological fracture.
- Bleeding disorders.
- Immune thrombocytopenic purpura.
- Autoimmune lymphoproliferative syndrome.
What do the results mean? A CBC counts the cells in your blood. There are many reasons your levels may not be in the normal range. For example: Abnormal levels of red blood cells, hemoglobin, or hematocrit may be a sign of anemia, heart disease, or too little iron in your body.What is a normal WBC count for a woman? ›
The normal number of WBCs in the blood is 4,500 to 11,000 WBCs per microliter (4.5 to 11.0 × 109/L).
The normal Hb level for males is 14 to 18 g/dl; that for females is 12 to 16 g/dl. When the hemoglobin level is low, the patient has anemia.
In cancer care, a CBC is used to: Help diagnose some blood cancers, such as leukemia and lymphoma. Find out if cancer has spread to bone marrow. See how your body is being affected by cancer treatment.What is an alarming white blood cell count? ›
In general, for adults a count of more than 11,000 white blood cells in a microliter of blood is considered high.What is a normal hematocrit level? ›
Hematocrit is the percentage of red cells in your blood. Normal levels of hematocrit for men range from 41% to 50%. Normal level for women is 36% to 48%.What WBC count is too low? ›
In general, for adults, a count lower than 3,500 white blood cells per microliter of blood is considered low.Can a CBC detect diabetes? ›
No, tests like HBA1C and Glucose fasting help in detecting diabetes.Can CBC detect cholesterol? ›
Our Chemistry Panel & Complete Blood Count (CBC) helps assess cardiovascular health and overall wellbeing by measuring cholesterol, triglycerides and blood cell count. It also reports on health markers that indicate liver and kidney function.What is the range for anemia? ›
Anemia can be defined as a reduction in hemoglobin (less than 13.5 g/dL in men; less than 12.0 g/dL in women) or hematocrit (less than 41.0% in men; less than 36.0% in women) or red blood cell (RBC) count.What is a healthy hemoglobin level by age? ›
1-6 years: 9.5-14 g/dL. 6-18 years: 10-15.5 g/dL. Adult men: 14-18 g/dL. Adult women: 12-16 g/dL.What is a bad hemoglobin level? ›
A low hemoglobin count is generally defined as less than 13.2 grams of hemoglobin per deciliter (132 grams per liter) of blood for men and less than 11.6 grams per deciliter (116 grams per liter) for women.