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An AEC (Absolute Eosinophil Count) is a blood test that measures the number of eosinophils in your body. Eosinophils are a type of disease-fighting white blood cells (WBCs) that become active in the case of an infection, allergic disease, or drug reaction.
Eosinophil levels beyond normal can be indicative of an autoimmune disease, seasonal allergies, asthma, and parasitic infections. An abnormally low eosinophil count may be the result of intoxication from alcohol or the excessive production of cortisol. Low values of eosinophils are generally not a concern.
The other names are: AEC, Absolute Eosinophil Count.
There is only one parameter.
Absolute Eosinophil Count test measures the number of eosinophils present in the blood. Eosinophils, a type of white blood cells, help in fighting diseases. These come into action because they are said to be linked with certain infections and allergic diseases. The eosinophils are produced and mature in the bone marrow. Usually, they take about 8 days to mature and then are moved into the bloodstream.
The eosinophils have varied functions like physiological roles in organ formation, such as the development of the post-gestational mammary gland; facilitating movement to the areas of inflammation, trapping substances, killing cells, and bactericidal and anti-parasitic activity. It also helps in the treatment of immediate allergic reactions and modulation of inflammatory responses.
0.02 - 0.50 thou/mm3. (20 - 500 cells/cumm)
An Eosinophil count may help to diagnose a few conditions that might have a high count:
To diagnose the acute hypereosinophilic syndrome.
If you have an allergic disorder like asthma or hay fever.
An infection caused by a parasite or a fungus.
A reaction to certain medications
Usually, the early stages of Cushing’s disease, a very rare condition that can happen if you have too much of a hormone called cortisol in your blood
Eczema (itchy, inflamed skin)
Leukaemia and other blood disorders
No special preparation is required. Fasting is not required for this test.
This test requires a blood sample.
A healthcare provider, who is also called a phlebotomist, usually performs blood draws, including those for Absolute Eosinophil Count tests, but any healthcare provider trained in drawing blood can perform this task. The samples are sent to a lab where a medical laboratory scientist prepares the samples and performs the tests on analysers or manually.
You may expect to experience the following during the blood test or a blood draw:
You have to sit comfortably on the chair, and a healthcare provider will check your arms for an easily accessible vein. This is the inner part of your arm on the other side of your elbow.
Once the phlebotomist has located a vein, they will disinfect the area with an alcohol swab.
They will insert a needle into your vein to draw a blood sample. This might feel like a small pinch.
After the needle is inserted, the required amount of blood will be collected in a test tube.
When they have drawn enough blood for the test, they’ll remove the needle and hold a cotton ball or gauze on the pricked site to stop any bleeding.
They will apply a band-aid over the pricked site, and the blood collection is finished.
This process takes less than five minutes.
Once the phlebotomist has collected the blood sample, it will be sent to the laboratory for processing or testing. When the results are ready, your healthcare provider will share the results with you.
These blood tests are common, and they don’t carry any significant risks. You might have a slight pain like an ant bite when the needle gets inserted, and a small bruise can develop there.
These test reports are available via email or WhatsApp within 6 hours of the collection of the blood sample.
A normal blood sample will contain fewer than 500 eosinophil cells per microliter of blood in adults. Children may have varying values depending on their age.
If there are more than 500 eosinophil cells per microliter, then it means that you have a disease or disorder known as eosinophilia. It can be classified as mild (500-1500 per microliter), moderate (1500–5000 per microlitre), or severe if it is greater than 5000 per microliter.
This can also be due to:
Parasitic worm infection
Allergic reactions that are severe
A low eosinophil count could be due to intoxication due to alcohol and an elevated level in the production of cortisol, such as with Cushing's disease.
This normal absolute eosinophil count is less than 500 cells per microliter (cells/mcL).
The normal value ranges might vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your healthcare provider about the meaning of your specific test results.
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