When you feel sick with something your doctor cannot immediately diagnose, you often are required to get a blood test called a complete blood count or CBC. There are many causes of a low blood count which range the spectrum of medical severity from a simple infection to cancer. White Blood Cells – chemotherapy can drastically lower white blood cells (below) and putting your risk of contracting an infection higher than normal. Red Blood Cells – Chemotherapy can also cause a decrease in the number of red blood cells (below) .
Red blood cells (RBC) or erythrocytes are cells responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body. RBC count, also known as erythrocyte count, is a blood test to determine the number of red blood cells in blood, which is essential to tissues to function properly. The normal ranges can be different for different laboratories and also differ depending on the measurements or samples. As we have read earlier, the amount of oxygen received by the body is determined by the number of red blood cells in blood. Various symptoms of low RBC count can include fatigue, being easily tired, pale appearance, palpitations (heart racing), shortness of breath, etc. If the anemia is long standing, the body will get used to low oxygen levels and no symptoms are noticed; however, if the condition is acute, the symptoms can develop rapidly. Incorporate green leafy vegetables and red meat in the diet to get a dose of iron, folic acid and vitamins which help to increase the hemoglobin levels and build red blood cells. Sometimes the doctor might advise growth factor injections, which increases the number of red blood cells. Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising. Low levels of red blood cells causes anemia, which may lead to blood transfusion in severe cases. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause megaloblastic anemia, in which the red blood cells produced are abnormally large. Very low red blood counts can occur when the red blood cells are produced normally but then destroyed. The term low blood sugar is often used frivolously to describe a range of symptoms that may or may not be related to a low plasma glucose concentration. Refer to  Blood Sugar Levels for Diabetes and Impaired Glucose Tolerance (high readings) for more information. There are are also general and non-specific signs and symptoms which should not be used in isolation to diagnose hypoglycemia. As the blood glucose levels continue to drop without any intervention, the glucose supply to the brain is severely impaired and may result in the symptoms listed below.


Please note that any information or feedback on this website is not intended to replace a consultation with a health care professional and will not constitute a medical diagnosis. Cancer cells can rapidly grow and divide and chemotherapy drugs are aimed at terminating them. These infections can occur in any part of your body, such as in the lungs, urinary tract, rectum, and mouth.
If these cells are decreased below the threshold level – the tissues may be deprived of oxygen and you may develop anaemia which can make you feel very tired.
They are usually taken on a weekly basis during your chemotherapy treatment to monitor levels of each type of blood cell and ensure that they are at an acceptable level in the blood stream. If the hemoglobin levels are low, the body is required to work a lot harder to supply oxygen to all the body tissues.
Usually, ranges given above are common measurements, but doctor should be consulted for the specific test results.
The oxygen from the lungs binds with the hemoglobin of the red blood cells, which is then circulated throughout the body. Other symptoms like hair loss, malaise (feeling unwell) and worsening of heart problems can also indicate low red blood cell count (Anemia). Not overdoing any physical activities, lying down when tired and lying flat on the bed when feeling dizzy helps. If the condition is not severe, over the counter iron supplements for daily use will be advised. Perkins also has extensive experience working in home health with medically fragile pediatric patients. While small amounts of blood loss, the most common cause of anemia according to the National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute, won't normally cause a large drop in the red blood count, acute or chronic internal bleeding can cause the red blood count to drop severely. Sickle cell anemia, an inherited disease, causes sickle shaped red blood cells with a short life span, the University of Maryland Medical Center says. Hemolytic anemias, which can be inherited or acquired, destroy red blood cells faster than they're produced, which may result in a need for blood transfusion, the University of Maryland Medical Center states.
There is also confusion relating to the blood glucose levels that can be classified as hypoglycemia. This triggers certain processes like releasing the glucose stored in the liver (glycogen) in an attempt to stabilize the blood glucose levels. In patients who experience frequent episodes of hypoglycemia, the body may stop releasing epinephrine.
Changes in behavior at this stage may resemble inebriation (alcohol intoxication, drunkenness) and is sometimes mistaken for alcohol dementia in alcoholics. If your white blood cell count result drops too low your specialist may decide to delay treatment or lower your chemotherapy dose, giving the cells a chance to recover.


If your platelet count becomes too low you may notice that you bruise or bleed more easily than usual.
Because the hemoglobin contained in red blood cells carries oxygen to tissues all over your body. Low hemoglobin level means the person is anemic and can result in symptoms of fatigue and shortness of breath.
Instead of getting up suddenly, it is better to sit on the bed for a while and ask for help when feeling unsteady on feet.
The injections will be administered till the red blood cell count comes to normal, after which they will be discontinued.
Heavy menstrual periods are the most common cause of anemia in women of childbearing age, the University of Maryland Medical Center states.
This is known as hypoglycemic-associated autonomic failure (HAAF) or is also referred to as hypoglycemia unawareness. Blood cells in the bone marrow (location of blood cells) are one of the specific normal cells that may be affected.
If your red blood cell count result comes back too low, rather than postponing chemotherapy treatment, your specialist may suggest a blood transfusion which will increase your red blood cell count. Iron supplements can cause constipation, to prevent it, include prunes in the diet when taking iron supplements. Some cancers and chemotherapy and radiation to treat cancer can also decrease red blood cell production and anemia. The blood glucose levels continue to drop until the neuroglycopenic symptoms may be evident.
Change positions slowly, be cautious not to get injured, be prepared for mood swings and change in interest. Some chronic diseases such as chronic inflammatory diseases can also interfere with red blood cell production, the Mayo Clinic says. Plastic anemia, which can be congenital or develop later in life, results in an inability to produce red blood cells. Sexual activity during the morning should be preferred as the body has been rested overnight.



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