Complete Blood Profiling test or Hemogram
What is CBP? Why is it done? How is it done? What are the components? What does it say?
Complete Blood Profiling (CBP) is a routine screening test done for early onset detection or diagnosis when there are signs and symptoms related to a wide range of conditions and diseases affecting the blood cells (RBCs, WBCs, and platelets). This is especially useful when there is a suspicion of infection, inflammation, bleeding disorder, leukemia, or anemia, caused by lifestyle or genetic factors. CBP test is also effective in monitoring specific conditions and/or effectiveness of treatment after diagnosis is established in cases of anemia, hemoglobinopathies, bone marrow aplasia, nutritional deficiencies, thrombocytopenia, autoimmune conditions, infections and parasitemia, malignancies, drug response, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, etc.
A typical blood investigation requires 0.5mL of whole capillary blood for a Complete Blood Profile in order to assess the following parameters:
- RBC (RBC count, Hemoglobin, ESR, PCV, MCV, MCH, MCHC)
- WBC (WBC, DC)
- Platelets (Platelet count, BT, CT)
Red Blood Cells (Normal value: 4.5 – 6 million/µL)
Fundamentally, RBCs are oxygen transporters of the human body, keeping fatigue and anemia at bay. Oxygen is vital for metabolizing food and releasing energy, which is vital for performing daily tasks of life.
Anemia implies lowered oxygen carrying capacity of blood cells due to insufficient RBC or iron deficiency. Causative factors include blood loss, nutritional deficiency, RBC destruction, drug interactions and bone marrow defects.
Polycythemia (Increased red cell mass) – abnormal increase in RBC count (8-11 mil/µL)
Hb% variation (Due to elevated PCV, low plasma volume)
PCV (Hematocrit) – RBC concentration in blood volume
MCV (Mean Corpuscular Volume) – The average volume of RBC (Useful to classify the anemia; Microcytic, Normocytic, Macrocytic)
MCH (Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin) – Quantity of Hemoglobin present in one RBC (Useful to classify anemia; Normochromic, Hypochromic)
MCHC (Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration) – Concentration of hemoglobin in an RBC (Most important absolute value in diagnosis of anemia)
Reticulocyte Count – Immature RBCs (Number helps determine causes of anemia)
RDW (RBC Distribution Width) (Elevated levels suggests large variability in RBC size)
White Blood Cells (4000 – 11000/µL)
White blood cells are the human body’s natural defense system triggered to fight against infectious pathogens. Elevated levels of WBC can indicate the presence of an infection or onset of certain diseases and lowered levels indicate response to certain medication or rheumatic diseases.
Parameters covered are Total WBC count, Differential count, and Absolute count.
DC (Dendritic Cells) are WBCs classified based on size: Neutrophils, Eosinophils, Basophils, Lymphocytes, Monocytes. It is useful in the detection of cases such as leucopenia, leukocytosis, leukemia, COVID19, etc.
Platelets (100000 – 500000/µL)
Platelets or thrombocytes are a form of natural plastering agents of our body that prevent or stop bruising and bleeding by forming clots on the surface of a wound.
Platelet count that is lower than the normal range (thrombocytopenia) or higher than the normal ranges (thrombocytosis) is usually a sign of an underlying medical condition.
Thrombocytosis/Thrombocytopenia could arise during pregnancy, iron deficiency, hemophilia, bleeding disorders, dengue, etc.
What should one do with the report?
These days such medical reports are simplified and thus interpreted by individuals. However, though comprehensive, it is always recommended to consult with a professional clinician in order to avoid misinterpretations and crucially to help in administering viable treatment procedures based on the individuals’ condition, to monitor the sensitivity and specificity of ongoing treatments and the response to certain drugs.
Based on the detailed CBP report, the treating clinician recommends treatment and care. For the clinician, this test is also a means to confirm diagnosis and to keep the body healthy while fighting disease. After all, a healthy mind is a healthy body!
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