Is it possible to have an infection if all the symtpoms are there but the white blood cell count is in the normal range?

1 Answer

  • 6 months ago

    Yes of course. Even with serious infections like sepsis a person can have a normal white count. It lacks sensitivity. 

    There are many localized infections that do not cause an altered white count. 

    One needs signs and symptoms along with other tests that can aid in determining if a person has an infection or not. 

    "The WBC is the most commonly used metric to investigate infection, but is also the least useful. Septic shock may cause either leukocytosis or leukopenia. Many septic patients exist between these two extremes, with a normal WBC (such patients often develop leukocytosis in a delayed fashion). For example, half of patients presenting to the hospital with bacteremia may have a normal WBC (2). Thus, while a substantially abnormal WBC may suggest the presence of infection, a normal WBC reveals little."

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