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Platlets & White- Blood Cells, Oh My!

Guest gomiesmom

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Guest gomiesmom

My petite little girl, Lilly, was in for her annual vet check up on 10/4/12, receiving a Lyme vaccine, Lepto vaccine, Heartworm, erlichia, etc. nap test, and blood pulled for a CBC panel and titer eval. for Distember/parvo - titers came back o.k , so did not vaccinate this year. Vet saidfrom the in-house blood panel, her platlets were "trending down", so she wanted to ere-check in about a month. ( I will list theWBC & Platlet values, each panel, below) Well, today were were in for the re-chekc and the Platlets were fine again, and actually al lot higher, but NOW, her White Blood cells are lower that hers have ever been, per below:

Lilly is 6 yrs this past May, and she's been with us since she was a year & a half old and she is from the WV track, and only raced one lowly race, retired due to recklessnes, otherwise, a very healthy girl:

Historical Platlets:

9/30/2011 -- 98,000 ; 11/3/2011 - 83,000 ; 10/4/2012 - 62,000 ; 11/5/12 - 311,000

( G-hound "normal" I have used for reference in two separate published papers by OSU vets say "normal " is - 1st paper- 80,000 - 120,000 ; 2nd says anywhere from 112,000 - 295,ooo depending on the mahcine used, and also cites another published source saying 145,000 - 309,000 is Greyhound "normal")


Historical White Blood Cells :

9/29/08 - 6,150 ( or 6.15); 9/2009 - 5,050; 9/2011- 5370; 11/2011- 5,130; 10/4/12- 4710; 11/5/12- 1620.

( same as above - both the same papers list "normal " range - 1st paper - 2,000 - 6,000; 2nd paper - same three machines list normal low anywhere from 3,300 to 4,400 an high end from 6,900 to 10,800. )

Note that today, in addtion to the machine panel, they counted the WB Cells in a smear, just to be sure the machine was correct, showing the 1,620.

We drew more blood today and are sending to an independant lab for analysis as well. We have sent various blood but mostly urine to this same lab, as they can take into account the breed and analyize it better, considering the g-hound quirkly blood &/or urine values.


Any thoughts, anyone? Lilly is healthy, otherwise, has perfectly clean teeth, etc. She has no visible signs of infection, and no temperature. She has been acting normally, eating & drinking normally. Vet is concerned, and has mentioned bone marrow testing. Obviously, I would like to rely more on the paper citing 2,ooo for low end G-hound WBC count, b/c really is 1,620 that far off from that, in an otherwise heahtly houndie? I don't want any unnecessary , invasive testing, but at the same time am very concerned, and do not want to take any chances with my little Lil.

Any thoughts? ( test from Lab will be back by Thurs or Friday of this week )




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Can you send the CBC results to Osu for a consult?--they will want to see the entire CBC-looking for a retic count, absolute %'s, color, shape of the cells etc.... While its a concern I wouldn't worry just yet.

Edited to add--while the lab has the blood you might want them to run a clin path &/or a full tick panel too :)

Edited by tbhounds
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Guest gomiesmom

Update on Lilly - bloodwork:


Vet emailed - WBC count came back from indep. lab at 5200., so within GH norma.l Vet said basically , it was a problem with their machine, they have calibrated their machine etc, but I am sort of concerned, as they SAID, the day they got the low WBC count on the machine, they smeared and counted under a microscope "just to make sure".

Not sure if I should switch vets or what . I have been considering it. I like the vet, and she is open to "greyhounds are different" and does not proclaim to know everything, etc, making her open to consults w/ for example OSU...

Platlets are lower still at 54K. What could cause low Platlets, guys? Tick bourne? She's only had the snap test for erlichia, etc. No signs of bleeding disorder or cannot clot, although she has not been hurt, etc.


"exact email from vet" :

I got the results back and they are much more consistent with what we have seen in the past. The White Blood Cells came back normal at 5200. The Platelets were a bit low at 54K. We called and talked to a technician at Idexx regarding the discrepancy and he was able to check the machine's test history etc. online and make some adjustments. Point being, the previous results were accurate but the last one was not on the Idexx machine. I am going to credit your account for that CBC. I would not worry about Lilly at this point, but I would suggest rechecking the CBC in 1 month (thru Antech) and just confirm that she is stable. It would not hurt at that point to report her values to OSU (or earlier if you want). Clinically, she is doing well...bloodwork indicates that she is a Greyhound with slightly low platelets. Please also be aware that there can be slight variations in the numbers from one machine to another, so the 54K may not have dropped much from her previous numbers if they all had gone to Antech. This is why I want the follow up test to go to Antech...less confusion.




Thanks - Lilly's mom...

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Did they note any platelet clumping? Pretty common to see platelet clumping especially with ghs. I like to say that platelets are like teenage girls--they like to form little clicks and hang out together. When the platelets clump it's impossible to get an accurate count. Many times the lab will run a manual count and will make notes such as "platelets appear adequate".

Can you post the rest of the CBC?

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Agree with tbhounds regarding platelets - most common cause of a low count is clumping, and most reference labs will include a comment to indicate whether clumping was noted.


I wouldn't worry about the WBC. Numbers can fluctuate, and her numbers are all consistent with greyhound values.

Jennifer &

Willow (Wilma Waggle), Wiki (Wiki Hard Ten), Carter (Let's Get It On),

Ollie (whippet), Gracie (whippet x), & Terra (whippet) + Just Saying + Just Alice


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