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I am 8 weeks pregnant, low WBC count. Is this normal?

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Practicing since : 2004
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hi. I'm 8 wks pregnant and I have 1800/mm3 WBC count, which is very low. no differential. RBCs H/H, PLT all normal. Is this a normal lab early during pregnancy?
Posted Wed, 26 Sep 2012 in Pregnancy
Answered by Dr. Monika Choudhary 4 hours later

Thanks for posting your query.

In non pregnant patients, a normal WBC count is somewhere between 5,000–10,000 cells/mm3. But for pregnancy those between 6000 to 0000 cell/mm3 i.e. the count is slightly elevated. If your count is low, there can basically be two causes:
1. Congenital neutropenia where there could be an inborn error. A previous normal counts rules out this possibility.
2. Due to some acquired infections - Infectious neutropenia represent the most common cause of acquired isolated neutropenia. A number of bacterial, viral, parasitic and ricketsial infections are responsible.

To rule out whether it is congenital or acquired I will advise you to consult your physician and get repeat white blood count (WBC count) and C - reactive protein (CRP) done.

I hope your query has been answered. I will be available for further follow up.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: I am 8 weeks pregnant, low WBC count. Is this normal? 12 hours later
Thank you very much for your prompt reply.
Congenital neutropenia is ruled out as I have previous CBC with normal WBC count.
I understand it could be any other viral/parasitic/bacterial infections. Few of them have been ruled out already like the most important, HIV. I don't have any lymphadenopathy, no fevers, the only significant risk factor will be that I'm working with kids on a everyday basis and I suffer from colds also on a kind of regular basis, because of my daily exposure to children.
I double checked the report and it is said that the differential was unable to report due to degeneration of cellular morphology. Could the result be influenced if the time lapse between specimen drawing and testing is prolonged?
Could this be just a transitory problem at beginning of the pregnancy (knowing the fact that pregnancy is a state of immunosuppression )?
Thank you very much and I'm looking forward to hearing from you,
Answered by Dr. Monika Choudhary 1 hour later
Welcome back.
Neutropenia is said to be pathological if WBC count is less than 4,000 cells/mm3. Get your differential WBC count too. Very little can be interpreted with WBC alone.
It could not be related to pregnancy, that is a physiological state.
Most probably you are suffering from viral infection due to cold & neutropenia due to which is transient & will resolve within a week.
If you are not having any symptomatic illness, wait for a week & then get repeat WBC count done.
So get relaxed & let me know your reports after a week.
Dr. Monika
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: I am 8 weeks pregnant, low WBC count. Is this normal? 1 hour later
Thank you very much for your help. I'll let you know as soon as I get a new CBC count back.
Best Regards,
Answered by Dr. Monika Choudhary 3 hours later
You are welcome.

If you are satisfied with my answer and have no more queries for now, please close this discussion.

If you wish that I should answer your queries in future, you can ask me about your concerns here:
Best Wishes
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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