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Complete blood count


Complete blood count (CBC or B-TVK) provides important information on the various blood cells, their numbers and types. The blood count tests for red cells (erythrocytes), white cells (leucocytes) and platelets (thrombocytes). Abnormal results for these cells may be a sign of illness.

The blood consists of various cells circulating through arteries, the heart and veins and delivering nutrients, hormones, vitamins, antibodies and oxygen to tissues. Red blood cells contain a protein called haemoglobin which delivers oxygen to tissues. White blood cells protect the body against bacteria, viruses and fungal infections and regulate the immunological process. Platelets promote coagulation in the event of wounds and ruptured blood vessels.

When should CBC be measured?
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Infection
  • Bruises or bleeding
  • Stomach pain
  • Paleness
  • Headache
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Tongue pain
  • Fragile fingernails
  • Humming in the ears
What does a CBC test measure?

The CBC is a highly common test which is used for screening, diagnosing and monitoring various conditions. The test can be used to diagnose and monitor anaemia, infections, allergies, illnesses and impaired immune response, for example. A basic blood count is a narrower test than a complete blood count. A complete blood count includes itemisation of white blood cells.

Women > 15 y117 - 155 g/l35 - 46 %3,9 - 5,2 xE12/l82 - 98 fl27-33 pg320 - 355 g/l
Men > 15 y134 - 167 g/l39 - 50 %4,3 - 5,7 xE12/l82 - 98 fl27 - 33 pg320 - 355 g/l

B -Tromb 150 - 360 xE9/l

AgeB -LeukB -NeutB -LymfB -MonoB -EosB-Baso
> 18 y3,4 - 8,2 xE9/l1,5-6,7 xE9/l1,3 - 3,6 xE9/l0,2 - 0,8 xE9/l0,03 - 0,44 xE9/l<0,1 xE9/l
40 - 80 %20 - 45 %1 - 11 %1 - 5 %

The number of white blood cells (Leuk) is the actual number of white blood cells in proportion to the blood volume. Both a decrease and an increase may be significant. There are five types of white blood cells, which carry out separate tasks in protecting the body against infection: neutrophils (Neut), lymphocytes (Lymf), monocytes (Mono), eosinophils (Eos) and basophils (Baso).

Neutrophils (Neut) are white blood cells whose number varies daily according to the bodily functions. These cells are the first to defend the body against bacterial infections.

Lymphocytes (Lymf) are white blood cells that respond to viral infections.

Monocytes (Mono) are large white blood cells that are transferred from the blood stream into tissue as a macrophage or a “large eater”. They destroy foreign cells.

Eosinophils (Eos) are white blood cells in the immunological defence system, participating in nearly all vital functions. They are also called granulocytes and their numbers respond to allergies and parasitic infections.

Basophils (Baso) are white blood cells preventing parasites and unnecessary coagulation of the blood.

The number of red blood cells (Eryt) is the actual number of red blood cells in proportion to the blood volume. Both a decrease and an increase may be indicative of an abnormal condition.

Haemoglobin (Hb) measures the amount of the oxygen-delivering protein in the blood.

Haematocrit (HKR) measures the numbers of red blood cells.

Mean corpuscular volume (MCV) measures the average size of red blood cells.

Mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH) measures the amount of oxygen-delivering haemoglobin in red blood cells. Large red blood cells tend to have a higher MCH level, in other words the average amount of haemoglobin.

Mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) measures the concentration of haemoglobin in the blood cells. Increased MCHC levels (hyperchromia) are detected in circumstances where the haemoglobin is abnormally concentrated inside red blood cells.

Thrombocytes (Tromb) measures the amount of platelets in the blood. Both a decrease and an increase may be indicative of bleeding or bone marrow disorders.

Please contact your physician or other healthcare professional if you suspect an illness or need help interpreting the results.

White blood cells (Leuk):

  • Bacterial or viral infection
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cancer affects the production of cells in the bone marrow
  • Acute leukaemia (malignant disorder where the production of white blood cells increases abnormally)
  • Malignant blood disease disrupting the production of white blood cells (myeloproliferative disorder)

Neutrophils (Neut):

  • Bacterial infections
  • Immunological disease
  • Malignant blood disease (myeloproliferative disorder)

Lymphocytes (Lymf):

  • Viral infections
  • Malignant myeloproliferative disorders

Monocyte (Mono)

  • Bone marrow disorders
  • Long-term inflammation
  • Disorders related to tissue damage
  • Malignant blood disease

Eosinophil (Eos):

  • Asthma
  • Hay fever
  • Rash
  • Medicinal substance allergy
  • Parasitic infection
  • Inflammation of a blood vessel (vasculitis)
  • Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Bone marrow disorders

Basophil (Baso):

  • Infections
  • Bone marrow disorder (chronic myeloid leukaemia)

Red blood cell (Eryt):

  • Dehydration
  • Burn

The MCV is elevated when the red blood cells are abnormally large (macrocytic). This can be caused by e.g.:

  • Excessive use of alcohol
  • Folic acid deficiency
  • Liver disease
  • Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
  • Pregnancy
  • Bone marrow disorders

Thrombocytes (Tromb):

  • Bleeding
  • Inflammation
  • Infections
  • Post-surgery
  • Bone marrow disorders
  • Spleen insufficiency

White blood cells (Leuk)

  • Some medicinal products
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Bone marrow insufficiency
  • Some vitamin and mineral deficiencies may cause anaemia
  • Viral infection
  • Enlarged spleen
  • Acute leukaemia

Lymphocytes (Lymf)

  • Lymphocytic leukaemia

Red blood cells (Eryt)

  • Anaemia

The MCV is decreased when the red blood cells are abnormally small (microcytic)

  • Iron deficiency anaemia
  • Long-term inflammation
  • Blood disease or thalassemia


  • Iron deficiency
  • Inflammation
  • Thalassemia

Reduced MCHC values (hypochromia) are detected in connection with:

  • Iron deficiency anaemia
  • Long-term inflammation
  • Thalassemia

Thrombocytes (Tromb)

  • Vitamin deficiency
  • Some medicinal products (for chemotherapy)
  • Excessive use of alcohol
  • Liver diseases
  • Enlarged spleen
  • Bone marrow disorder
  • Viral infection
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Megaloblastic anaemia (large red blood cells)
  • Blood diseases
  • Risk of enlarged spleen
  • Active vitamin B12 support the function of the brain and nervous system (1142 S-B12-TC2)
  • Vitamin B6 has effects on the functioning of the nervous and immune systems (3429 S-B6-vit)
  • Transferrin receptor, soluble, carries iron into cells and tissues (1949 S -TfR)
  • Ferritin indicates the status of the iron reserves of the body (1395 S-Ferrit)
  • All cells in the body need iron (2566 fS-Fe)
  • Folic acid has effects on the well-being of the brain and cells (1416 fS-Folaat)

SYNLAB test list: Blood count and leucocyte differential count (2474 B -PVK+T, 3696 B -TVK, 2225 B-Diffi) https://www2.synlab.fi/laboratoriokasikirja/tutkimuskuvaukset/verenkuva-leukosyyttien/

Terveyskirjasto health library: Basic blood count (B-PVKT) https://www.terveyskirjasto.fi/snk03030/perusverenkuva-b-pvkt?q=pvk

LabTest online: Full Blood Count (FBC) https://labtestsonline.org.uk/tests/full-blood-count-fbc


Fasting is not required

This examination does not require fasting