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Should I Be Worried That My WBC Count Is High?

Should I Be Worried That My WBC Count Is High?
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Published on September 23, 2015

Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you. 

Have a question for the experts? Send them to questions@patientpower.info.

My WBC Count is High, Should I Be Worried?

Question from Jay:
The last three years my WBC has been 62,000–97,000–and 165,000. I am on watch and wait and getting a blood test soon but worried that my WBC count seems really high. 

Answer from Dr. Leclair:
High is a relative term. I mean that some folks have much higher (for example, I know of one man with a 386,000 wbc). But the simple number is not enough to determine importance. There are two issues that help to determine whether the number is meaningful or not. 

1.  How quickly did this happen? The concept is called the lymphocyte doubling time. If the absolute number of lymphocyte doubles within one year or less, then this brings up the potential of treatment.

Your absolute have doubled but if this took more than a year, your physician might not be willing to start therapy

2. Change in status.  Are you feeling poorly or more poorly? Are you getting more colds, etc.? Do you feel more tired? Are you feeling more enlarged nodes? This too would be a point that points to the potential of therapy. 


Please remember the opinions expressed on Patient Power are not necessarily the views of our sponsors, contributors, partners or Patient Power. Our discussions are not a substitute for seeking medical advice or care from your own doctor. That’s how you’ll get care that’s most appropriate for you. 

Have a question for the experts? Send them to questions@patientpower.info.

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