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To all of you doctors out there......

Would a complete cbc show if my son had leukemia? They (docs) mentioned a spinal tap and I am curious as to what they are looking for? He has been coughing, very lathargec, fever spikes on and off, headache on and off, ear infection that won't heal with antibiotic and his spleen is a little enlarge from what the ultrasound showed. They don't know what is wrong with him and he has been like this for two straight weeks. I want some other opinions and maybe answers? The only thing I think they could be looking for is leukemia? His white blood count was high but not much and they said it is probably from his ear infection it was....17,400. My son is 7 yeras old.


Asked by Anonymous at 4:36 PM on Jan. 17, 2010 in Kids' Health

This question is closed.
Answers (6)
  • I'm a medical technologist and a former hematology supervisor, the department of a hospital lab that does cbcs and in many labs also spinal fluid analysis. There are many different things a cbc can show. It is one of the most common lab tests done.

    A spinal tap is more specific. If they did a spinal tap they would be testing for meningitis, a swelling and irritation (inflammation) of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord.

    Since your son has had a fever and high white count if they were concerned about meningitis infection they would have done the test right away. The infection is dangerous in children and is contagious. Children are frequently hospitalized and in isolation if they have meningitis. It's a big deal.

    I don't think you have to worry about memingitis (at this time) or about leukemia. Two weeks seems like a long time but its not that long for an infection.

    Answer by Gailll at 4:49 PM on Jan. 17, 2010

  • I am not a doctor, but I wonder if your son has mono?

    Answer by rkoloms at 4:38 PM on Jan. 17, 2010

  • They tested him for that and it was negative.....unless they can miss it somehow??

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:50 PM on Jan. 17, 2010

  • A cbc isn't a mono test but the doctor, or a lab tech, would be able to tell someone had mono from a cbc.

    Answer by Gailll at 4:51 PM on Jan. 17, 2010

  • Okay they did the test for mono and meningitis and ruled out no on both of them. Here is the son has had several sicknesses this winter and it takes him at least a week or more to recover from them all. The rest of us got a 24hr bug and we were over it and that was two weeks ago. He is on the couch and can't do what could it be? They haven't done a spinal tap just mentioned that it could be a possibility.'He hasn't been able to go to school or anything...he throws up out of the blue and his neck is in and out of stiffness and that's why they thought meningitis. Also every time he sits up from laying down or stands up from sitting his head hurts really bad for a few seconds and then hes fine. He is not a complainer at all and to see him in pain breaks my heart :-(. Thank you for your help you guys!

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:53 PM on Jan. 17, 2010

  • Oh and the twenty four hr bug affected my husband and 5 other children and lasted exactly 24hrs....but not for him...weird

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:55 PM on Jan. 17, 2010