My white blood count (WBC) registered low in my recent blood test so I’m grounded for a few days. No meeting friends at restaurants. No church or grocery shopping this weekend. No wedding tomorrow night. Too many germs about for someone in my state of caducity.
The normal range for a WBC is from 3.5 to 10.6 K/mcl – whatever that means. My count is 3.3 – that means my immune system is in the crapper.
The technical name for white blood cells is leukocytes and a low WBC is called leukopenia, which in my case is caused by chemotherapy. I’m right on schedule in that the WBC usually tanks between 7 and 14 days after treatment, referred to as the nadir.
Blood Test (sans needle) – True or False
1. There are half a million white blood cells in every drop of human blood.
2. White blood cells live a few weeks but red blood cells live about four months.
3. Your white blood count is usually lower in the morning than the afternoon.
4. White blood cells are formed from bone marrow stem cells.
5. Smoking may cause an increase in white blood cells.
6. White blood cells are colorless because they don’t contain hemoglobin.
7. About 7 % of your body weight is blood (7-9 quarts in the average adult).
8. When white blood cells die they are destroyed by other white blood cells.
9. Dr. Spock’s blood was green because it contained copper.
10. There is no blood in Blood Pudding.