Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsMedicine · 7 years ago

Can you die from getting low red blood cells?

My dad said his doctor told him that his red blood cells are getting lower or something, and usually when that happens, the white blood cells increase. But they're not.

And it's not anemia

4 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    White blood cells do not increase just because red blood cells decrease. Usually, a decrease in cells is across the board. When white cells dramatically increase, it's a sign of infection or leukemia.

    If his red cells are decreasing in number, whether his white cells are doing anything (my guess is that if they go back and look at previous studies, they have dropped a bit as well), this can be the result of many causes, some minor, some serious.

    The best thing you can do is have your dad call the doctor and ask him to explain it to you and your mom. Make a list of questions - what could cause it, how could his red cells be low and everything else normal, what does he think is wrong, what other tests are necessary, how is is treated. It sounds to me like your dad is not a very good historian so your mom should go with him to the doctor to really hear what the doctor has to say so the important information can get relayed.

    MANY things can lead to a decrease in red cells - iron deficiency and other anemias, some medications (decrease all cells). He could have an autoimmune disease that is specifically targetting the red cells, blood loss (an ulcer in his stomach or some bleeding in his lower GI tract -- even severe hemorrhoids can lead to this), or early kidney disease.

    If his idea of a balanced diet is donuts and coffee for breakfast, pizza for lunch, and meat and potatoes for dinner, plus junk food snacks, just having a more nutritious diet could help. Having liver once or twice a month (if he is willing to eat - people either love it or hate it....), dark green vegetables (like spinach) could also help. Absorbing iron can't happen if your diet isn't balanced - you need zinc and copper as well, which is why liver is so helpful. But breakfast cereals that are enriched and fortified are helpful.

    Source(s): Retired nurse
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  • 7 years ago

    Someone is confused.

    The definition of anemia is having a low red cell count. There are many different types of anemia, and different causes of it. So if your dad's red cell count is low, then he is anemic.

    While cells do not increase in anemia. They increase in response to infection, and other bodily stresses.

    Anemia can be a problem if it's severe. Red cells carry oxygen around the body, and if there aren't enough of them, the heart and other vital organs can suffer if they can't get the oxygen they need.

    Certainly, a better explanation is needed from his physician.

    Source(s): I'm a doctor.
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  • Bijoy
    Lv 4
    7 years ago

    Though your question is not clear enough to answer.

    But it can be answerd in this way...Like

    Red blodd cells contains Haemoglobins which carry oxygen to all the organs of the body like heart, kidney, liver etc. If the number of red blodd cell is low then less amount of oxygen will be carried by the blood and he might not be able to do moderate exercise due low level of oxygen. But if their is problem in the production of red blood cells or stop producing red blood cell in the blody then its a severe type of problem.If it is not then possibility of dying is very low

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  • 7 years ago

    Is he sick? We need more details. When you get sick white blood cells increase to fight the infection.

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