Cyclic Neutropenia: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Cyclic Neutropenia

They are some diseases and disorders that occur due to a problem within the blood stream. These conditions can be very serious and medical treatment should be sort after if an individual has any of the symptoms associated with these disorders.

Neutropenia is a condition in which an individual has an abnormally low number of a type of white blood cell called a neutrophil. Neutrophils are a specific kind of white blood cell that helps to prevent and fight off infections. There function is to eat up the bad microorganisms that enter your body. Neutrophils make up fifty to seventy percent of the circulating white blood cells in the body.

Neutropenia is broken down into four groups according to the severity of the aliment and the neutrophil count.

  1. Neutropenia- count less than 2000-slight risk of infection.
  2. Mild Neutropenia- count greater than 1000 but less than 1500-minimal risk of infection.
  3. Moderate Neutropenia- count greater than 500 but less than 1000-moderate risk of infection.
  4. Severe Neutropenia- count less than 500-severe risk of infection.

They are five main types of severe Chronic Neutropenia

  1. Congenital neutropenia- this is a rare inherited form of the disease usually detected soon after birth. It affects children and can result in the loss of teeth or gum infections.
  2. Cyclic neutropenia- This tends to occur three weeks and lasts three to six days at a time due to changing of the cell production by the bone marrow. It is often present in several members of the same family.
  3. Autoimmune neutropenia-This is most common in infants and young children where the body identifies the neutrophils as the enemy and makes antibodies to destroy them.
  4. Drug-induced neutropenia-They are some drugs that can cause neutropenia.
  5. Idiopathic neutropenia-This is a rare form of neutropenia which develops in children and adults usually in response to an illness. It is usually diagnosed when the disorder can not be attributed to any other diseases or aliments. It can often cause life-threatening infections.

Who can get it?

Neutropenia occurs more commonly in females than in males. Elderly individuals seem to have a higher incidence rate than younger individuals. It is found in blacks and in Yemenite Jews more frequently. It may be present at birth or can occur at any stage in life.

What causes it?

The causes of Neutropenia can fall into three categories:

  1. Decreased production in the bone marrow resulting from a hereditary disorder, cancer, medications, radiation, or Vitamin B12.
  2. Increased destruction from aplastic anemia, autoimmune neutropenia, and chemotherapy.
  3. Marginalisation and sequestration caused by hemodialysis.

The causes are from the side effect of certain medications, such as diuretics or antibiotics, leukemia, viral infections, such as mononucleosis or AIDS, bacterial infections such as tuberculosis, and certain autoimmune disorders, such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.

How does it happen?

Neutropenia is present when there is a decrease in the production of white blood cells, destruction of white blood cells after they are produced, or the pooling of white blood cells.

What are the symptoms?

The symptoms of Neutropenia depend on the severity of the illness. The most common symptoms include fever, frequent infections, mouth ulcers, diarrhea, burning sensation when urinating, redness, pain or swelling around a wound, sore throat, shortness of breath, and chills.

How can it be diagnosed?

A doctor will be able to diagnose Neutropenia when doing a full blood count. This will involve the checking of the white blood cell count. Neutropenia is present when the neutophil count is less than two thousand. If the diagnosis is uncertain, a bone marrow biopsy may have to be done to be certain.

What treatments are available?

Treatment of Neutropenia is usually directed at the underlying cause of the aliment. There is no ideal treatment, if a person is a cancer patient receiving chemotherapy, and they develop Neutropenia, then they are given blood cell growth factors. Patients are also given high doses of antibiotics to combat the fever and fight off the infections.

Neutropenia is a serious illness that occurs when the body’s white blood cell count is compromised and low. It is important that the underlying cause of this aliment be discovered, that way a proper treatment regiment can be created for the individual.

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