“What is a CBC blood test?” is asked by thousands of Americans daily as they make their way to the lab to get their blood drawn. CBC is short for “complete blood count”. Many health care professionals will use the abbreviation of CBC because it’s quick and simple and easy to remember. When asked what is a CBC blood test most folks will go to Google, Yahoo or Bing to search for their answer. A CBC is a grouping of hematological tests that asses your blood. There are some tests that are easy to understand like a WBC count. A WBC count is a white blood cell count.
So really what is a CBC blood test? The CBC or Complete blood count test may be performed under many different conditions and to assess many different symptoms or diseases. The complete blood count tests results can reflect problems with fluid volume (such as dehydration) or loss of blood. The CBC blood test is not a required fasting blood test. So we have answered a good bit of what is a CBC blood test so far? The complete blood count testing can reveal problems with RBC production and destruction, or help diagnose infection, allergies, and problems with blood clotting. What does RBC mean? It means Red Blood Cells. So far we know that CBC can measure the volume of your white blood cells and your red blood cells so what is a CBC blood test also measure. It is imprtant to note that you can get an online blood test through national laboratories with results returned to you safely which is very affordable.
The complete blood count provides measurements on the MCV, MCH, and MCHC which reflect the size and hemoglobin concentration of individual cells, and are useful in diagnosing different types of anemia. So the MCV measures the size of your RBC’s and takes an average of them and calculates a value. The MCH calculates the amount of Hemoglobin (HGB) that is in each RBC. This measurement also takes an average calculation of thousands of RBC’s that are examined. The MCHC is a measurement of the HGB and compares it to the size of the RBC which is the MCV. This is usually a calculation.
CBC blood test Platelets are measured in a CBC blood test. Platelets, or what they medically referred to as thrombocytes, are blood cell fragments that are involved in the cellular mechanisms that are essential in forming blood clots. If blood clots do not form, bleeding from a ruptured blood vessel will occur. The measurement of platelets is always needed when ordering a CBC. It helps paint a more accurate picture of your bloods overall status. Platelets are also needed to prevent leakage of red blood cells from uninjured blood vessels.
The CBC blood test measures the following:
• The number of red blood cells (RBCs)
• The number of white blood cells (WBCs)
• The total amount of hemoglobin in the blood
• The fraction of the blood composed of red blood cells (hematocrit)
The CBC test also provides information about the following measurements:
• Average red blood cell size (MCV)
• The amount of Hemoglobin per red blood cell (MCH)
• The complete blood count test measures the amount of hemoglobin relative to the size of the cell (hemoglobin concentration) per red blood cell (MCHC).
• Within the complete blood count, the platelet count is a laboratory test that also usually is included in the complete blood count tests.
Every person should get a complete blood count test performed at least once a year.