Is Low White Blood Count Serious?

What is the most common reason for low white blood cell count?

A low white blood cell count usually is caused by: Viral infections that temporarily disrupt the work of bone marrow.

Certain disorders present at birth (congenital) that involve diminished bone marrow function.

Cancer or other diseases that damage bone marrow..

Should I be worried about low white blood cell count?

A truly low white blood cell count also puts you at higher risk for infections — typically bacterial infections. But viral infections also may be a concern. To help reduce your infection risk, your doctor may suggest you wear a face mask and avoid anyone with a cold or other illness.

What happens when you have a low white blood cell count?

White blood cells are produced by your bone marrow to help your body fight infection. If you have fewer than normal white blood cells, you have a higher risk of getting an infection. When you have a low white blood cell count, your immune system isn’t working as well as it should.

How do you treat low white blood cell count?

Common treatments include:Medications. Medications can be used to stimulate your body to make more blood cells. … Stopping treatments that cause leukopenia. Sometimes you may need to stop a treatment like chemotherapy to give your body time to make more blood cells. … Growth factors. … Diet. … At home.

Is low white blood cells a sign of cancer?

Why It Occurs. A person with cancer can develop a low WBC count from the cancer or from treatment for the cancer. Cancer may be in the bone marrow, causing fewer neutrophils to be made. The WBC count can also go down when cancer is treated with chemotherapy drugs, which slow bone marrow production of healthy WBCs.

What is the first sign of leukemia?

Common leukemia signs and symptoms include: Fever or chills. Persistent fatigue, weakness. Frequent or severe infections.

What is a dangerously low white blood cell count?

A white blood cell count of less than 4,000 cells per microliter of blood is considered low. Sometimes a low white blood cell count is something you are born with (a genetic condition), which may or may not be a cause for concern.

How do you know your white blood cells are low?

A low white blood cell count is called neutropenia . If you have a low white blood cell count, you may: Have repeated fevers and infections. Get bladder infections that may make it painful to pass urine, or make you urinate more often.

Do low white blood cells make you tired?

Answer • Leukopenia is a low white blood cell count. In itself, it doesn’t usually produce fatigue. White blood cells are the body’s Armed Forces, keeping infections from occurring. A low count can lead to repeated infections.

Can anxiety cause low white cell count?

Calabrese says. In addition, stress decreases the body’s lymphocytes — the white blood cells that help fight off infection. The lower your lymphocyte level, the more at risk you are for viruses, including the common cold and cold sores.

How can I raise my white blood cell count?

Poultry and Lean Meats. Foods high in protein, such as lean meats and poultry, are high in zinc — a mineral that increases the production of white blood cells and T-cells, which fight infection. Other great sources of zinc are oysters, nuts, fortified cereal, and beans.

What cancers cause low WBC?

Low white blood cell count. Some cancer treatments, mainly chemotherapy, may lower your body’s white blood cells. Cancers that affect the blood and bone marrow can also lower the count. These types of cancers include leukemia, lymphoma, and multiple myeloma.

How low is too low for white blood cells?

How many white blood cells (WBCs) someone has varies, but the normal range is usually between 4,000 and 11,000 per microliter of blood. A blood test that shows a WBC count of less than 4,000 per microliter (some labs say less than 4,500) could mean your body may not be able to fight infection the way it should.

What foods to avoid if you have low white blood cells?

Some foods you should eliminate while following the neutropenic diet:Dairy. Unpasteurized milk. … Raw starches. Bread with raw nuts, uncooked pasta, raw oats, and raw grains.Vegetables. Raw vegetables, salads, uncooked herbs and spices, and fresh sauerkraut.Fruit. … Protein. … Beverages.

Does coffee affect white blood cell count?

Conclusions. The pronounced increase in the white cell count in the group receiving caffeine appeared to be caused by greater muscle stress and consequently more intense endothelial and muscle cell injury. The use of caffeine may augment the risk of muscle damage in athletes.