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Thread: Low Lymphocytes, High Monocytes?

  1. #1
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    Low Lymphocytes, High Monocytes?

    This years wellness check CBC came back with low lymphocytes (16.6%) and high monocytes (13.1%). All other readings in the normal range. No medications. Asymptomatic.

    Question for the nurses: My doc will be clueless about any SCI related problems. Is there anything specific I should mention about this finding and SCI? Thanks.

    I am a 70 year old male, T4, 46 years post injury. HO in hips and knees, augmented bladder (section of small intestine spliced into bladder to enlarge it). Do intermittent cath, and I reuse the catheter. Do not empty the intestine as well as I wish, but have no particular problems because of it.
    T4 complete, 150 ft fall, 1966. Completely fused hips, partially fused knees and spine, heterotopic ossification. Unsuccessful DREZ surgery about 1990. Successful bladder augmentation using small intestine about 1992. Normal SCI IC UTI problems culminating in a hospital stay in 2001. No antibiotics or doctor visits for UTI since 2001: d-mannose. Your mileage may vary.

  2. #2
    Here is some good information about the WBC differential test:

    http://labtestsonline.org/understand...ntial/tab/test

    You should discuss the results with your physician to determine if further work-up or tests are indicated.

    (KLD)

  3. #3
    You probably know that lymphocytes and monocytes are two subtypes of white blood cells, and these cells help protect you from infections.

    The percentages are not really the important numbers... it is the "absolute" number of lymphocytes that is more important. And you should really only be concerned if there is a trend towards lymphocytes getting lower and lower.

    A single isolated low lymphocyte count can happen if you have a simple viral infection/bug etc... But as we get older, sometimes our blood counts can drop some. The reasons are often not known. My father has a low lymphocyte count that first appeared in his late 50's, and has continued until now (almost 70). Mostly we just keep an eye on it, and make sure he is up to date with all of his immunizations. Specifically, if one type of his lymphocytes drops too low (his CD4 lymphocytes), he will start taking an antibiotic a few times a week to help prevent infections.

    So yes, it is good to talk to your doctor about this as KLD recommends if your absolute number of lymphocytes are low... and continue to be low in repeat blood tests done when you are feeling well/normal. If they stay low, ask for a referral to an Immunologist that works with adult patients.

    There is no relationship between SCI and changes in white blood cell counts.

    Make sure you get your flu shot every year (and get the high dose FLUZONE specifically for seniors), make sure you have had a pneumonia shot (Prevnar's adult version is the best one), and you probably should also get the chicken pox vaccine too. But these are recommendations for all seniors.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Thanks for your thoughtful reply.
    T4 complete, 150 ft fall, 1966. Completely fused hips, partially fused knees and spine, heterotopic ossification. Unsuccessful DREZ surgery about 1990. Successful bladder augmentation using small intestine about 1992. Normal SCI IC UTI problems culminating in a hospital stay in 2001. No antibiotics or doctor visits for UTI since 2001: d-mannose. Your mileage may vary.

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