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A complete blood count (CBC) is a blood test that measures the cells of your blood. The types of cells are red blood cells (RBCs), white blood cells (WBCs), and blood cell fragments that help with clotting (platelets). Changes in these cells can warn your health care provider about many conditions, including anemia, infection, inflammation, bleeding, and blood-related cancer.
A blood sample is required for this test. It is usually collected by inserting a needle into a blood vessel.
Your test results will be reported as values. Your health care provider will compare your results to normal ranges that were established after testing a large group of people (reference ranges). Reference ranges may vary among labs and hospitals. Reference ranges for a CBC usually apply only to people who are older than 18. For this test, common reference ranges for people older than 18 may be:
Red blood cells
White blood cells
Results that are outside the reference ranges may indicate that you have an infection or other health condition.
Talk with your health care provider about what your results mean.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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