What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells – While having a high red blood cell count does not always indicate a health problem, in some cases it could also be a symptom of a disease or disorder.

Red blood cells (RBCs), also called erythrocytes, are the cells that carry oxygen throughout the body. They are also one of the main components of blood. Having a high red blood cell (RBC) count means that the number of red blood cells in your blood is higher than normal.

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

When you have signs and symptoms of a disease that may involve problems in the production of red blood cells, a complete blood count (CBC), which includes a red blood cell count, is usually ordered to help with the diagnosis. A complete blood count is usually part of a pre-surgical exam and routine physical exams.

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Changes in the red blood cell count also mean changes in the level of hemoglobin and hematocrit in the blood. When the number of red blood cells, hemoglobin and hematocrit are below the established normal range, the patient is said to be anemic. On the other hand, when a person has values ​​that exceed the normal limit, he is said to be polycythemic. Too many red blood cells can lead to decreased blood flow and other related health problems, while too few red blood cells can significantly affect the amount of oxygen reaching the tissues.

Health care providers may order a complete blood count when patients show some of the most common signs and symptoms of anemia, such as:

This blood test may also be done regularly to monitor patients with certain blood disorders, such as chronic anemia, bleeding problems, and polycythemia, including kidney disease.

People undergoing cancer treatment should also have regular blood tests as radiotherapy or chemotherapy tends to reduce the production of all blood cells in the bone marrow.

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The following reference ranges are theoretical guidelines only and should not be used to interpret test results. There may be variations between the reference range and the numbers reported by each laboratory conducting the test. Please consult your doctor for interpretation of test results.

While having a high red blood cell count does not always indicate a health problem, in some cases it could also be a symptom of a disease or disorder. Lifestyle and health factors can also cause an increase in the number of red blood cells. They include:

This rare blood disorder develops when the body produces too many red blood cells (RBCs). When there is an overproduction of red blood cells, the blood becomes abnormally thicker, making people more prone to developing blood clots. Blood clots can affect the normal flow of blood through your veins and arteries and cause a heart attack or stroke.

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

Impaired blood flow also means that the body’s organs don’t get the oxygen they need to function normally and can lead to serious health problems, such as angina and heart failure.

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Polycythemia vera is a chronic blood disorder that can be life-threatening if not properly diagnosed and treated. While there is no cure for this condition, there are treatments that can help manage the disease and its complications. Treatment for PV may also involve more than one treatment method to help manage the disease.

The body tries to compensate and increase red blood cell production for any medical condition that may cause low oxygen levels. These conditions include:

A kidney that functions abnormally due to kidney disease, a kidney transplant, and kidney cancer can cause the production of too much erythropoietin, which increases the production of red blood cells.

Some medications, such as methyldopa and gentamicin, can increase red blood cell (RBC) counts. Methyldopa is a drug used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure), and gentamicin is an antibacterial drug used to treat bacterial infections in the blood. Be sure to tell your doctor about the medications you take.

Causes Of Increased Red Blood Cells. Cells Erythrocytes. Hemoglobin. The Structure Of Red Blood Cells Stock Vector

When a person is dehydrated, the plasma or liquid component of the blood decreases and the concentration of red blood cells increases.

Your doctor may recommend certain medications or procedures to help lower your red blood cell count, especially if a medical condition is causing the abnormal count.

A procedure called bloodletting can be performed regularly by a healthcare provider until the level of red blood cells (RBCs) is close to normal. In this procedure, a needle is inserted into the vein to draw blood into a designated container or bag.

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

In people with bone marrow disease or polycythemia vera, health care providers may prescribe hydroxyurea, which is an anticancer drug that can help slow the production of red blood cells in the body. Regular doctor visits are necessary while taking this medication to monitor and ensure that your red blood cell count does not drop too low to dangerous levels.

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A high red blood cell count is usually discovered when doctors order blood tests to diagnose a patient’s condition. You can ask your doctor and discuss the results of your blood tests. Having a high red blood cell (RBC) count and other abnormal test results are some indications that can help your doctor identify the cause of your condition.

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Is a trusted resource that allows patients to find the best doctors in their area. Be visible and accessible with your up-to-date contact information, certified patient reviews and online appointment booking functionality. Polycythemia (also known as polycythemia) is a laboratory finding in which the hematocrit (the percentage of volume of red blood cells in the blood) and/or or hemoglobin contraction are increased in the blood. Polycythemia is sometimes called erythrocytosis, and there is significant overlap between the two findings, but the terms are not the same: polycythemia describes any increase in hematocrit and/or hemoglobin, while erythrocytosis describes a specific increase in the number of red blood cells in the blood. blood.

Absolute polycythemia may be due to genetic mutations in the bone marrow (“primary polycythemia”), physiological adaptations to the environment, medications, and/or other health conditions.

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Laboratory studies such as serum erythropoietin levels and getic tests may be helpful in clarifying the cause of polycythemia if physical examination and patit history do not reveal a probable cause.

Mild polycythemia alone is often asymptomatic. Treatment for polycythemia varies and typically involves treating the underlying cause.

Treatment of primary polycythemia (see polycythemia vera) may involve bloodletting, antiplatelet therapy to reduce the risk of blood clots, and additional cytoreductive therapy to reduce the number of red blood cells produced in the bone marrow.

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

Polycythemia is defined as serum hematocrit (Hct) or hemoglobin (HgB) exceeding normal values ​​expected for age and sex, typically Hct > 49% in healthy adult males and > 48% in females, or HgB > 16 .5 g/dl in males or > 16.0 g/dl in females.

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Several diseases or conditions can cause polycythemia in adults. These processes are discussed in more detail in their respective sections below.

Relative polycythemia is not a true increase in the number of red blood cells or hemoglobin in the blood, but rather an elevated laboratory finding caused by a reduction in blood plasma (hypovolemia, see dehydration). Relative polycythemia is often caused by loss of body fluids, for example due to burns, dehydration and stress.

A specific type of relative polycythemia is Gaisböck syndrome. In this syndrome, which occurs primarily in obese individuals, hypertension causes a reduction in plasma volume, resulting (among other changes) in a relative increase in red blood cell counts.

If relative polycythemia is deemed unlikely because the patient has no other signs of hemocontraction and has sustained polycythemia without obvious loss of body fluids, it is likely that the patient has absolute or vera polycythemia.

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Polycythemia in newborns is defined as hematocrit > 65%. Significant polycythemia may be associated with blood hyperviscosity or blood thickening. Causes of neonatal polycythemia include:

The pathophysiology of polycythemia varies depending on its cause. The production of red blood cells (or erythropoiesis) in the body is regulated by erythropoietin, which is a protein produced by the kidneys in response to a low oxygen supply.

As a result, more erythropoeitin is produced to stimulate red blood cell production and increase oxygen-carrying capacity. This results in secondary polycythemia, which may be an appropriate response to hypoxic conditions such as chronic smoking, obstructive sleep apnea, and high altitude.

What Causes Too Many Red Blood Cells

Additionally, some getic conditions can impair the body’s accurate detection of serum oxygen levels, leading to excessive production of erythropoeitin even without hypoxia or reduced oxygen delivery to tissues.

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Alternatively, some types of cancer, particularly renal cell carcinoma, and medications such as testosterone use can cause inappropriate production of erythropoeitin which stimulates red blood cell production despite adequate oxygen delivery.

Primary polycythemia, on the other hand, is caused by getic mutations or defects in red blood cell progenitors in the bone marrow, leading to overgrowth and hyperproliferation of red blood cells regardless of erythropoeitin levels.

The increased hematocrit and red blood cell mass in polycythemia increases blood viscosity, leading to impaired blood flow and contributing to an increased risk of clotting (thrombosis).

The first step in evaluating new polycythemia in any individual is to conduct a detailed history and physical examination.

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