Test Detail
Interpreting Results

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Written by
Dr. Betina Chandolia
BDS, MDS - Oral Pathology and Microbiology
Reviewed by
Dr. Ashish Ranjan
MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)
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Red Blood Cell Count

(RBC Count)
You need to provide
This test is for
Male, Female
Test Preparation
  1. No special preparation required


What is RBC Count?

This test measures the amount of red blood cells (RBC), also known as erythrocytes in the blood. RBCs are formed in the bone marrow and contain hemoglobin, a protein that carries oxygen to the tissues in the body. This test is mostly used for the diagnosis of anemia and is often done as a part of complete blood count for routine health examination.

A low RBC count is manifested by fatigue, shortness of breath, dizziness, lightheadedness while changing positions quickly, increased heart rate, headache and pale skin. While symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath, joint pain, tenderness in the palms and soles, itching skin and sleep disturbance indicate high RBC count.

An abnormally high level of RBCs, also known as erythrocytosis might be an indication of excessive cigarette smoking, hypoxia, congenital heart disease, dehydration, renal cell carcinoma, pulmonary fibrosis and polycythemia vera.

Interpreting RBC Count results


The normal range of red blood cells is

Adult Male 4.5 - 5.5 10^6/µL

Adult female 3.8 - 4.8 10^6/µL

Children 3.0 - 5.4 10^6/µL

High RBC count may be caused by low oxygen levels, Polycythemia, kidney disease, dehydration or intake of anabolic steroids.

Low RBC count may be due to anemia caused by decreased production or blood loss.

Answers to Patient Concerns & Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about RBC Count

Frequently Asked Questions about Red Blood Cell Count

Q. Is there any risk associated with this test?
There is no risk associated with the test. However, since this test involves a needle prick to withdraw the blood sample, in very rare cases, a patient may experience increased bleeding, hematoma formation (blood collection under the skin), bruising or infection at the site of needle prick.


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