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The human body is a proper system which operates on the basis of properly defined principles and procedures. When we get infected by a disease or there is an injury, our body goes into a weak physical state. This state has a lower strength level than the standard level. In such situations, the white blood cells play their role. It is a simple fact that the white blood cells protect the body from germs, infections and other related negatives. Thus, if the count of these cells goes down, the human body goes into a vulnerable state. In other words, the chances of the human body getting attacked by diseases and germs increase.
What is ANC?
If you look at the definition of ANC (Absolute Neutrophil Count), the terms involved are quite simple. ANC defines the count of neutrophils in the human body. A lot of people do not know about Neutrophils. They are a kind of white blood cells responsible for protecting the body.
ANC provide protection against diseases
The human body is exposed to diseases at all times. We can consider an example to gain more understanding. A lot of people catch fever frequently. This is because they are physically weaker. Along with that, as they have a lower count of ANC’s so the chances of getting fever and other allergies are higher. Thus, it is always said that every person should keep a check on the ANC count at all times. A lot of people face medical complications because the ANC suddenly goes down. A sufficient ANC is important if the body has to be protected from diseases and the process of injury recovery has to be accelerated.
What is Neutropenia?
As it has already been mentioned above, white blood cells are important to combat infections and diseases. Neutrophils are also a kind of white blood cells and carry the responsibility of protecting the human body against germs. To be more specific, neutrophils provide protection against different forms of bacteria. Every individual should know that if a bacterium is not treated on time, it can cause serious damages to the human health.
Jaundice is a serious disease during which patients portray various symptoms including deep yellow urine. Most people know that it attacks the liver but a lot of them do not know about the cause. Jaundice (a form of hepatitis) is caused when a particular kind of bacteria enters the human body. There is no doubt that jaundice can worsen in no time. In certain situations, it can also prove be fatal. People who recover from jaundice in quick time have a good count of neutrophils. Medical experts carry out blood tests to check the count of neutrophils and other cell types when a patient is infected by jaundice. In a nutshell, neutrophils need to have a sufficient count if the patient has to recover from this disease without any major damages.
Basic Definition of Neutropenia
If you go through the basic definition of neutropenia, it is the deficiency of neutrophils. Patients of neutropenia easily get infected by diseases because the body does not have a strong defense. In other words, they are at a higher risk of various health issues.
The moment the neutrophil count goes below a minimum limit, the body goes into a riskier phase. Timely treatment is obviously important as the patient loses the ability to combat germs with time. In worst situations, even flu can turn into a major problem for such people.
Worst Case Scenarios prove fatal
It becomes easier for the human body to combat serious medical complications if the body is in a healthy state. People who are strong internally recover from cancer and leukemia without much of an issue. Again, this depends on the internal strength an individual has. Neutropenia kills the strength to combat bacteria at a rapid pace. Neutrophils combat bacteria and prevent the human health condition from declining. The flip side is that when you are suffering from Neutropenia, you are not in a strong physical state. Hence, in such physical conditions, if you get infected by a medical complication, combating becomes extremely hard. It is just like fighting a battle without any or less soldiers.
- Worst case scenarios of Neutropenia can prove to be fatal and there are no two ways about it. The example of jaundice mentioned above can be reconsidered here. If someone is neutropenia, his probability of getting infected by jaundice would be much higher than normal. This is simply because his body would be in a much weaker physical state.
- The biggest problem is that people do not know about the neutrophil count until they have a blood test done and deficiency is determined. However, if you do not know about this declining count and a bacterium enters the human body, the health condition starts worsening at an uncontrollable pace. However, once you figure out that you are suffering from neutropenia, getting timely treatment is essential. It is mandatory to get the count to the normal limit so that the body can combat any possible bacteria attacks.
The Minimum Numerical Count
When does neutropenia start to build in the human body? To check this, you have to keep a check on the count of neutrophils. Along with that, you should be aware of the minimum limits.
- When the ANC count goes below 1500 per microliter, it means that neutropenia has started to create presence inside your body. This is when you should talk to a medical expert and initiate medical treatment. The situation would obviously worsen with the delay.
- Every disease has a level of high severity. In case of neutropenia, if the count starts going below 500 per microliter, it is a red alert. Get in touch with a medical expert as soon as this situation arises.
Causes of Neutropenia
It is not possible to treat a disease if you are not aware of the causes. Medical professionals check the causes of a disease before they actually prescribe a treatment. Other than that, knowing about the causes is also important so that further relapses can be prevented.
Given below are some common causes of Neutropenia.
1. Chemotherapy for cancer
It is an undoubted fact that cancer is a serious medical complication which worsens within no time. Most cancer patients above level 2 fail to survive. Thus, timely treatment is absolutely essential. Cancer patients are subjected to chemotherapy in which patients are subjected to a lot of radiation. Even though it helps them in combating cancer but there are serious after effects. Chemotherapy badly damages the cell count in the human body and exposes it to further health threats. In an overall manner, Chemotherapy weakens the state of the human body by killing antibodies including Neutrophils.
- Chemotherapy is a serious form of treatment with several adverse after effects. Even though it does cure cancer but also reduces the physical strength by a major margin. Cancer survivors are physically very weak and exposed to numerous other hazards.
- One of the serious problems which chemotherapy creates is neutropenia. This treatment attacks various kinds of cells in the human body including different types of WBC (White blood Cells) including neutrophils. When the count of neutrophils start going down, the chances of neutropenia rise. In a nutshell, it can be said that chemotherapy increases chances of neutropenia.
- A strong advice in this relation is that a proper diagnosis for neutropenia should be done if you have successfully combated cancer. There is no doubt that cancer leaves the human body in a very weak state. Hence, the risks of neutropenia and other diseases increase after that. Timely diagnosis and treatment is what needs to be done.
2. HIV and Tuberculosis
If you talk about the nature of HIV and Tuberculosis, both these serious diseases are related to blood. HIV proves to be fatal in most cases and even tuberculosis can go beyond the margin of treatment if diagnosis is not done in due course of time.
- Both HIV and Tuberculosis damage the white blood cells on a major scale. People who luckily survive these diseases are not in a state of even combating basic germs. In addition to that, these diseases have a major negative impact on neutrophils. Thus, most survivors are expected to be neutropenia patients. In a nutshell, HIV and Tuberculosis leave the body in a very weak state. During the course of treatment as well as when the disease is spreading, a lot of white blood cells are terminated resulting in increasing body weakness.
- Neutropenia is expected in most people who suffer from HIV and Tuberculosis. The reason is that a major percentage of neutrophils are eradicated even when the patient undergoes treatment. This further increases the chances of getting infected by other diseases like jaundice and typhoid. The reason is that the body is not in a state to combat germs and infections.
3. Bone Marrow diseases
All bone marrow diseases have a negative effect on the white blood cells. For instance, people who suffer from leukemia have deficiency of white blood cells including neutrophils. Thus, when a bone marrow problem starts to spread and in the course of time when it is being treated, the count of neutrophils is on the decline. Hence, it can be said that leukemia patients have a tendency of getting effected by neutropenia.
Symptoms of Neutropenia
Neutropenia has its set of symptoms like any other disease. Knowing about these symptoms if you want to make sure that you are suffering from this disease and the diagnosis is done properly. Again, remember that delaying the treatment can worsen the situation of the patient within no time so being watchful is the key. In other words, if you know about the symptoms, it would be much easier to get the treatment done in due course of time.
Here are some key symptoms of Neutropenia
1. Continuous swollen gums
Most of us have swollen gums when we have a tooth related issue. If the problem persists for a small time span, it is considered normal. However, if your teeth are in health condition and still the gums are swollen, it can be a sign of neutropenia. Thus, if you witness that the gums are swollen for long without any core cause being there, get a proper diagnosis done. If the neutrophil count is above the minimum limit, you can be rest assured that there are no chances of neutropenia. In other cases, getting timely treatment for the disease is essential.
2. Sores in the mouth
Sores in the mouth point towards various health issues including neutropenia. Again, it depends on the time duration for which the problem is present. In normal cases, sores vanish within no time. However, if you feel that the problem persists for several weeks, neutropenia may be one of the core reasons. Thus, the best option is to get a proper diagnosis done.
In simple terms, pathophysiology is a branch of science that deals with organs. It is mainly related to studying organs when they are in a declining condition. The processes of pathophysiology cover various areas including the following.
1. Disease signs and symptoms
Pathophysiology is used to determine the signs and symptoms of a disease. This is obviously essential because the treatment of a disease cannot be initiated until the symptoms have been clearly identified. Through pathophysiology procedures, the signs and symptoms of various diseases including neutropenia can be confirmed.
When a patient is suffering from any disease including neutropenia, the route for treatment is clarified only when the diagnosis has been completed. By implementing different pathophysiological processes, the diagnosis stage of neutropenia and other diseases is completed.
Diagnosis of Neutropenia
It is not possible to treat a disease properly if the diagnosis stage has not been completed properly. In other words, correct updated diagnosis is essential for proper treatment.
The use of a quality ANC calculator is essential if you want to get assurance about whether you are suffering from neutropenia or not.
Here are the steps which have to be followed to diagnose neutropenia using this calculator.
- Once you open the link to the calculator, you would see few text boxes on the left where values have to be entered. To complete the diagnosis, you need to provide the neutrophils count, bands count and white blood cell count. Neutrophils are bands are entered in the percentage unit. However, the while blood cell count has a range of 3.7 to 10.7. Once you have entered all these values, you can move on to the next step.
- On the left side below the input values section, you would see a “calculate” button. Simply click this button after all the values have been entered. The results would be shown on the right side. For instance, if the produced result is 1700 cells / mm3, you can reach the conclusion that there is no neutropenia. Similarly, if the cell count is lower than 1500 on a small to medium scale, it would be low neutropenia. The severity of neutropenia would reach to moderate and high when the values would go further down.
For further convenience, you can add the ANC calculator as a widget.
Classification and Treatment of Neutropenia
Like any other disease or medical complication, neutropenia has its own severity levels and extents. After proper diagnosis, the severity level can be determined in an easy manner. The classifications of neutropenia are shown as below.
- You need to check the ANC value. If the ANC value is 1500 per microliter or above, the result for neutropenia would be counted as negative. However, once the count starts going below 1500, the problem would start. An ANC count of less than 1500 means that the patient is suffering from moderate or mild neutropenia. However, as the count decreases, the severity of the neutropenia increases.
- An ANC of less than 500 is counted as a serious sign and immediate medical attention should be attained in such cases.
Although certain treatment options are present to deal with neutropenia but prevention has a key role here. Neutropenia is all about bacteria. When bacterium enters the body, the immunity level goes down as the count of white blood cells decreases. The chances if bacteria decrease when an individual adopts a more hygienic routine. For instance, to reduce chances of this problem, you should wash your hands every time you leave the washroom. Along with that, try to opt for hygienic food only.
If you are suffering from neutropenia, the following treatment options would help you out.
- The treatment options of neutropenia depend on the causes of the disease. If the patient has low to mild intensity of the problem, anti-biotics are prescribed to make the situation better and improve immunity rate. In high severity cases this solution does not work well.
- In worst case situation when the count of white blood cells goes low by a major margin, administration of white blood cells is also one of the alternatives. The treatment option depends completely on the intensity of the problem.
The human body is exposed to infections, diseases and germs at all times. The situation can be prevented if a higher standard of hygiene is maintained. Neutropenia is referred to as deficiency of neutrophils. The human body contains different kinds of white blood cells and neutrophils are one of them.
Neutropenia is caused due to various reasons and cancer treatment is one of them. People who suffer from cancer have to go through various chemotherapy sessions. These sessions leave the human body in a weak physical state. The count of neutrophils decreases after chemotherapy sessions. Thus, it can be said that cancer patients are at high risk of neutropenia.
The best way to check the presence of neutropenia is using an ANC calculator. It is used to diagnose the disease as well as check its intensity. If there is no presence of neutropenia in the body, the ANC value should be 1500 or more. If the value of ANC is less than 1500, it is a confirmation that the patient is suffering from neutropenia.
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