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What Does Hct Mean In Blood Test

Cost Of Cbc Test Cost With Insurance

What Hematocrit Tells You About Your Health (Hematology)

Many health insurance policies in the U.S. cover the cost of the complete blood count test when it is done once or twice a year. If your physician recommends you to take the Complete Blood Count test more than twice in a year, you may have to pay the medical bill out of pocket. Also, the coverage offered by private health insurance policies and national health insurance programs varies widely. So we recommend you to check with your insurance company.

Our CBC testing providers do not accept any health insurance. But, on request, they can provide you with a receipt containing all the details like the name and code of the test, and CPT code which is necessary for insurance reimbursement purposes.

How Blood Is Tested

Once your blood is collected, its placed in a centrifuge or an automated hematology analyzer instrument.

The centrifuge separates the red blood cells from the plasma , white blood cells, and platelets, giving a direct measure of the percentage of RBCs in the blood sample.

Automated instruments determine the hematocrit through several methods. Some instruments measure/count cells through electrical impedance , some measure/count cells with a laser beam, and some measure/count cells by adding fluorescent reagents. Whichever method is used, the hematocrit is calculated from the RBC cell count , mean cell volume , and the total sample volume .

When Should I Get This Test

Your provider may test HCT as part of a CBC or if you are experiencing symptoms of an RBC disorder such as anemia. Indications for testing HCT include:

  • Brain fog or difficulty concentrating
  • Heavy menstrual flow
  • Blood in your stools or vomit
  • Cancer and cancer treatment
  • Leukemia or other conditions associated with bone marrow
  • Chronic health conditions, including kidney diseases

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Treatment Of High Hemoglobin

The treatment for a high hemoglobin level depends on the cause. You may just need treatment for the underlying condition, or you may need additional treatment for the high hemoglobin.

High hemoglobin, especially in polycythemia vera, is often treated with therapeutic phlebotomy. That involves removing a unit of blood . This may need to be done several times.

High hemoglobin is also treated with medication to reduce the number of red blood cells, which can decrease the effects and complications of the condition.

What Is A Hematocrit Blood Test

Pin on The Blood

The hematocrit blood test determines the percentage of red blood cells in the blood. Blood is composed mainly of red blood cells and white blood cells suspended in an almost clear fluid called serum. The hematocrit test indicates the percentage of blood by volume that is composed of red blood cells. The condition called “anemia” results from having too few red blood cells. Anemia causes a variety of symptoms. The hematocrit is a basic test that can tell a physician a lot about a person’s health.

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How Is A Hematocrit Test Different From Other Components Of A Complete Blood Count

A complete blood count measures several components of the blood, including red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, hematocrit and hemoglobin. Hematocrit is the percentage of your blood made up of red blood cells, calculated using the volume and size of RBCs. Simply stated hematocrit defines the viscosity of your blood, whether thick or thin.

Whereas hematocrit is the overall percentage of red blood cells in your total blood volume, hemoglobin is the iron-containing protein found in all red blood cells that gives the cells their characteristic red color. Hemoglobin enables RBCs to bind to oxygen in the lungs and carry it to tissues and organs throughout the body.

White blood cells are not related to hematocrit directly. White blood cells, also called leukocytes, are an important part of the bodys defense system. They help protect against infections and also have a role in inflammation and allergic reactions.

Platelets, also called thrombocytes, are tiny fragments of cells that are essential for normal blood clotting. The platelet count is a test that determines the number of platelets in your sample of blood.

Red Blood Cells Transporting Oxygen Throughout The Body

RBCs play a vital role in transporting oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body. These oval-shaped cells contain hemoglobin, the protein that binds oxygen while it is being carried to all the stationary cells in the body . The chemical process that converts the nutrients found in food into energy requires oxygen. All the stationary cells require energy to function thus, they need oxygen and are dependent on the RBCs to transport it.

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Drugs That Reduce Levels

Some drugs may reduce your hematocrit value if you are already taking them for some other health condition, but never start taking them or increase your dose for this purpose. Always follow the treatment plan prescribed by your doctor.

Drugs for mountain sickness, polycythemia vera , type 2 diabetes, male contraception, and malaria can reduce hematocrit .

Hematocrit can also be reduced as a result of taking:

What Is An Average Hematocrit Level

How to Measure the Hematocrit

35% 50% hematocrit level is considered normal in the case of a healthy adult. In the case of women, a hematocrit level between 36.1% 44.3% is considered normal, and in the case of men, a hematocrit level range between 40.7% 50.3% is considered normal. A hematocrit level between 32% 61% is average .

Hct tests are very reliable and usually pretty accurate for monitoring anemia. These tests aid medical practitioners in diagnosing the proper medical condition and advise the most suitable treatment. Some factors that are responsible for giving wrong and inaccurate hematocrit levels include:

  • Blood transfusions that have taken place recently
  • Hct levels are usually lower than usual when women are pregnant
  • Hct levels are generally higher than normal for people living at a high altitude
  • High hct levels are also caused by dehydration

Health practitioners very well know what factors could potentially skew hct test results. If some health conditions affect your hct results, your doctor might ask you to retake the test at a different time.

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How To Increase Hemoglobin And Hematocrit

The following are some of the natural ways to remedy low hemoglobin and hematocrits

1. Increase Iron Intake

Iron deficiency is one of the most common causes of low hemoglobin levels. Eating foods rich in iron, such as meat, fish, soy products, eggs, broccoli, green beans, nuts, and seeds, can boost the production of hemoglobin. These foods can also help in forming more RBCs.

2. Increase Folate Intake

Folate rich foods, such as beef, spinach, rice, peanuts, peas, beans, avocadoes, and lettuce, can help in the production of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is composed of heme, which is produced with the help of folate. This helps in carrying oxygen in your body.

3. Maximize Iron Absorption

It is important to consume iron that can be found in foods or supplements. Aside from that, you also need to maximize the absorption of iron. To do this, you can take vitamin C-rich foods like strawberries, fruits, and green vegetables, as well as supplements.

Foods rich in vitamin A, such as fish, liver, squash, sweet potatoes, kale, and collards, as well as foods rich in beta-carotene, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, cantaloupes, and mangoes, can also help in absorbing and using iron in your body.

Doctor, author and fitness enthusiast, Ahmed Zayed, MD, is a surgery resident with a passion for helping people live a happy healthy life. He is the author of numerous health-related books and contributor to several medicine, health and wellbeing websites.

What Do The Results Mean

Your hematocrit test results are reported as a number. That number is the percentage of your blood that’s made of red blood cells. For example, if your hematocrit test result is 42, it means that 42% of your blood is red blood cells and the rest is white blood cells, platelets, and blood plasma.

A hematocrit level that’s lower than normal may be a sign that:

  • Your body doesn’t have enough red blood cells . There are many types of anemia that can be caused by different medical conditions.
  • Your body is making too many white blood cells, which may be caused by:
  • Certain cancers, including leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, or cancers that spread to the bone marrow from other parts of the body

A hematocrit level that’s higher than normal may be a sign that:

  • Your body is making too many red blood cells, which may be caused by:
  • Your blood plasma level is too low, which may be caused by:
  • Dehydration, the most common cause of a high hematocrit
  • If your results are not in the normal range, it doesn’t always mean that you have a medical condition that needs treatment. Living at high altitudes where there’s less oxygen in the air may cause a high hematocrit. That’s because your body responds to low oxygen levels by making more red blood cells so that you get the oxygen you need.

    Pregnancy can cause a low hematocrit. That’s because the body has more fluid than normal during pregnancy, which decreases the percentage that’s made of red blood cells.

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    What Is Haematocrit In Blood Test

    Asked by: Diego Kulas

    A hematocrit test measures the proportion of red blood cells in your blood. Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout your body. Having too few or too many red blood cells can be a sign of certain diseases. The hematocrit test, also known as a packed-cell volume test, is a simple blood test.

    Other Tests For Evaluation Of Anemia

    Pin on Lab Tests/Work

    Serum bilirubin and lactate dehydrogenase can sometimes help differentiate between hemolysis and blood loss both are elevated in hemolysis and normal in blood loss. Other tests, such as vitamin B12 and folate levels and iron and iron binding capacity, are done depending on the suspected cause of anemia. Other tests are discussed under specific anemias and bleeding disorders.

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    What Should I Expect During A Complete Blood Count

    You dont need to do anything to prepare for a CBC. Your provider cleans your arm and inserts a needle. The needle may sting or pinch a little, but it shouldnt hurt. In infants, providers usually insert the needle into the babys heel.

    Through the needle, your provider removes a sample of your blood and collects it in a tube. Sometimes, your provider takes more than one tube of blood.

    After drawing blood, your provider removes the needle and places a bandage on your arm. Your provider sends the blood to a lab. Your body quickly rebuilds its blood supply.

    Why Do Doctors Test Hematocrit Levels

    Many conditions can affect red blood cell production or its life cycle. This can make it difficult for a medical professional to diagnose these conditions. A doctor will use a hematocrit test to confirm whether a persons red blood cell count is affecting a health condition.

    Doctors usually test hematocrit levels as part of a complete blood count .

    A CBC is composed of a range of tests and may include:

    • red blood cell count
    • reticulocyte count
    • an analysis of hemoglobin levels
    • an analysis of red blood cells, including size and shape
    • white blood cell tests

    A doctor will also consider a persons sex, race, and age. It is important to note that certain blood-related conditions, such as sickle-cell anemia, affect particular demographic groups at higher rates.

    Both high and low hematocrit levels can be detrimental to a persons health and result from various conditions and lifestyle factors.

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    Quality Control And Lab Safety

    Handling of blood should take place with the maintenance of proper aseptic precautions. The collected blood should be tested as soon as possible after collection. Prolonged storage at the room temperature would result in a change in the shape of the RBCs due to metabolism. After about 6 hours, the chances of hemolysis increase, which would give an erroneous result. In the macro-hematocrit method, the filing of the Wintrobe hematocrit tube requires proper care. In the microhematocrit method, the sealing of the capillary tube should be secure to prevent any leakage. The centrifuge machine should not be opened during the test to avoid erroneous results. The chances of error in the result will increase if the centrifugation is interrupted. Immediately after completion of the rotation, the operator should not open the lid should until after the complete stoppage of the rotation. For reuse of the Wintrobe hematocrit tube, proper cleaning is necessary as any foreign particle inside the tube would be counted either in the RBC column or plasma column.

    What Does Hct Mean In A Blood Test

    Erythrocyte indices (Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, MCV, MCH & MCHC) What Do These Lab Tests Mean?

    Since you found this page youre probably wondering what is HCT in your blood test.

    When you get blood work done many tests will assess your HCT levels .

    HCT stands for Hematocrit. and Erythrocyte Volume Fraction ).

    HCT results show the volume of red blood cells in your blood.

    The normal range for HCT results for these markers are

    • 38.5% 50% for men

    These results are integral to understanding certain aspects of your health.

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    High Hemoglobin And Hematocrit Can Be Caused By Numerous Problems

    High levels of Hemoglobin and Hematocrit in the blood indicate a variety of health problems. If your blood Hemoglobin level is between 13 g/dL to 17 g/dL and the Hematocrit level is between 40 g/dL to 50 %, then your body does not have any underlying health problems. But if Hemoglobin and Hematocrit levels exceed these levels, you should see a doctor immediately.

    What Does Hematocrit Measure

    measures the percentage of red blood cells in the total blood volume. A test can be performed using a capillary tube and a centrifuge machine . Usually, the levels are identified as part of a complete blood count , but they can also be tested alone. However, a CBC is the most common blood test that measures while also measuring the red blood cell count, white blood cell count, hemoglobin levels, and .

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    Causes Of Low Hematocrit And Hemoglobin

    Various medical conditions can cause low HCT and Hgb, which includes the following:

    The most common cause of low Hgb and low HCT is bleeding, which can be either visible or hidden.

    Most of the time, blood loss is a manageable condition as long as it is visible like in cases of injuries and heavy menstrual bleeding. A major problem occurs during internal bleeding because the blood loss can go on undetected for a long period. Most types of anemia are due to bleeding in the digestive tract. For severe blood loss in the gastrointestinal tract, the common causes are cancer or ulcer of the stomach, intestine, and esophagus.

    When a patient has a low Hgb and HCT with no visible signs of bleeding, the doctor will order a stool examination to test for the presence of blood.

    • Premature Destruction of Red Blood Cells

    Normally, RBCs can stay in the bloodstream for about 120 days. Then, the destruction of these blood cells occurs in the spleen and the bone marrow will release new RBCs.

    Various medical conditions can disrupt this normal process leading to low Hgb and low HCT. One example is hemolytic anemia, wherein there is a premature destruction of RBCs, and the bone marrow is unable to produce enough blood cells. In other types of anemia such as sickle cell and spherocytosis, the body attacks and destroys the RBCs with abnormal shapes.

    • Problems with the Bone Marrow
    • Increased Plasma Volume
    • Kidney Problems
    • Nutrient Deficiency

    Hct Auto Blood Test Results Meaning


    There are a number of health conditions that the HCT auto blood test is able to detect or monitor. It measures what may occur when there are differences to the proportion of red blood cells in the blood compared to what normally should be there. It is often ordered as part of a complete blood count, but may also be ordered independently if there are certain health issues suspected or which require ongoing monitoring.

    The most common health condition is anemia. It can detect low red blood cell numbers, low HCT and low hemoglobin levels. It can also detect high levels that may be leading toward toxicity. Medical providers will also use the HCT auto blood test to monitor anemia treatments, use the information to determine if blood transfusions are necessary, or even evaluate the severity of chronic dehydration.

    It is typically ordered when there are signs and symptoms which may lead a medical provider to believe that anemia is a possibility. This includes an overall lack of energy, a pale complexion, shortness of breath, and unusual weakness. Disturbed vision, headaches, and flushing may be an indication of polycythemia, which the HCT auto blood test can also detect.

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    What To Do For Abnormally Low Hematocrit Levels

    Doctors advise blood transfusions or intravenous blood if the tests show deficient RBCs. In some cases, if the body cannot make RBCs due to an existing or underlying health condition, the doctor might prescribe some medication to help stimulate new RBCs. A healthy diet rich in all essential nutrients, vitamins, and folic acid is also beneficial in preventing anemia.

    Just because you have low hct levels does not necessarily mean you suffer from the above medical complications. Your health practitioner will perform another medical diagnosis through further tests to help ascertain and determine whats going on .

    Diet And Lifestyle Changes

    If you have high hemoglobin, its important that you maintain a healthy diet. No specific dietary recommendations have been established, the following are good guidelines to follow:

    • Avoid foods that are high in sugar or fat
    • Eat an ample amount of fruit, vegetables, and lean protein

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