What is Low Lymphocytes Count or Lymphocytopenia

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low lymphocytes

The problem of low lymphocytes in the body is also known as lymphocytopenia. This causes the weakness of immune system and the body’s ability to counter the outer infections. Lymphocytes are the important cells of the body which fight against the harmful bacteria as well as viruses and reduces the risk of developing any diseases which also includes life threatening health conditions such as leukemia, Hodgkin’s lymphoma or lymphoma.

Here, we have tried to provide you all the important information about the problem of low lymphocytes in the body along with its causes and symptoms. Read onto know which diet you should follow to increase the lymphocytes count in your body.

What is Lymphocyte?

What is lymphocyte

As mentioned earlier, lymphocytes are the cells in the body which are required to counter the harmful bacterial as well as viral infection. These lymphocytes are the converted cells which is constantly produced by your bone marrow.

While few cells will flow with the bloodstream in your body, some will enter into the lymphatic system. Your lymphatic system is a group of tissues as well as organs such as the spleen, lymph nodes, and tonsils, which plays a key role in protecting your body from various infections.

Among the total cells produced by the lymphocytes, 25 percent remains in the bone marrow and become B cells. The remaining 75 percents flow to thymus to become T cells. They are also called as B lymphocytes and T lymphocytes.

These cells are of different kinds, which includes,

  • The cells activated by antigens to counter active infection, also known as effector cells.
  • The cells which are in your body to identify and memorize the past infections and provides the action if you become infected by the antigens again. These cells are called as memory cells.

What Causes Low Lymphocyte Count?

low lymphocyte count

There are various aspects which reduces the lymphocytes count in your body. These causes are classified into general causes, acquired causes as well as inherited causes. Then, there are chronic and acute causes as well. While the acute cause may go away once the issue is resolved, it is difficult to counter the chronic causes and may take a longer period of time to get resolved.

1. General Causes

Some of the general causes of low lymphocytes count in the body includes the lack of production of lymphocytes in the body or the destruction of lymphocytes even if producing in enough amounts.

Sometime lymphocytes may also get caught in the spleen or in lymph nodes. Intense physical stress, fasting, chemotherapy or radiation therapy for cancer along with viral infection like flu or hepatitis may cause the problem of lymphocytopenia.

2. Acquired Causes

The causes which develop in the body at some point of time in your life due to various malfunctions are called as acquired causes. These causes may also linked with the various underlying health conditions as well as the response to the medical treatment. Some of the major acquired causes of low lymphocytes count are,

  • Autoimmune disorders○ Blood cancer or other diseases
  • Steroid therapy
  • Infectious diseases
  • Chemotherapy or radiation

3. Inherited Causes

The causes which are linked with you due to the family history or genes of your parents can also cause the problem of low lymphocytes to count. These causes are known as inherited causes.

  • Combined Immunodeficiency syndrome
  • DiGeorge Anomaly
  • Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome
  • Ataxia-telangiectasia

The research is still needed what are the exact factors which cause the problem of low lymphocytes in the body. A large number of people also cause the problem due to various underlying causes.

What are the Symptoms of Low Lymphocytes Count?

symptoms of low lymphocytes count

It is considered as highly difficult to recognize the symptoms of low lymphocytes count in the body as it does not have any special symptoms. The disease can be diagnosed after the blood tests result done for various diseases as well as health conditions. Along with it, the symptoms of lymphocytopenia may also vary from person-to-person.

However, you can watch out for the signs listed below to get rid of low lymphocytes count in the body.

  • If there are an enlarged spleen or lymph nodes then it is one of the indications of HIV or cancer. In this condition, cancer is present if there is a low lymphocyte count in the body.
  • Respiratory viral infection along with a runny nose, cough, and fever.
  • Genetic immune system disorder which shows the symptoms of swelling of tonsils or lymph nodes.
  • Rash with painful, swollen joints which can be a sign of rheumatoid arthritis along with systemic lupus erythematosus.

How to Treat Low Lymphocytes Count?

treat low lymphocytes count

The treatment of low lymphocyte is completely based on the cause of the problem. Some of the major treatment which you may get to solve the problems are listed below.

1. Low lymphocyte due to drugs

Consumption of few drugs may cause the problem of low lymphocyte in the body. However, this problem may solved within few days and no other treatment is required.

2. Low Lymphocyte count due to AIDS

If the AIDS is the main cause behind the low lymphocyte count in the body then your doctor may prescribe the three antiviral drugs to increase the T cell count through a combination therapy. This can be helpful in increasing the chance of survival.

● Diseases

Various diseases as well as illnesses may also cause the problem of lymphocytopenia. Your doctor may treat the underlying disease according to its symptoms to counter lymphocytopenia. It is recommended to go for further testing as well as investigation if the white blood cell count does not appear normal within few days after the treatment.

● Genetic problems

Blood cell stem transplant or bone marrow stem transplant is considered as the best option if the lymphocytopenia is causes due to genetic disorders.

● Low white blood cell count

If the cause of low lymphocyte in the body is unknown along with any underlying cause then the treatment if not required to solve the problem of lymphocytopenia. It is considered that the condition will be solved within few days.

What diet to take for low lymphocyte count?

take for low lymphocyte count

Consumption of diet rich in nutrients as well as vitamins which strengthens your weak immune system helps in countering the bacterial as well as viral infections. Some of the tips while opting for the diet to counter low lymphocyte count are listed below.

● Proteins

Consumption of proteins, which contains amino acids, helps in the functioning of lymphocytes and keeps the immune system strong.

● Vitamins

Vitamin A is also highly helpful in increasing the vitamin A consumption. You can opt for a lot of green leafy vegetables and orange to take vitamin A. You should also opt for salmon, chicken or turkey to get vitamin B6, which is required for the proper development of lymphocytes.

● Green Tea

Regular drinking of green tea or any healthy tea is also highly beneficial to increase the lymphocyte count in the body.

● Fats

It is recommended not to eat foods which are high in fats as it may complicate the situation even more.

● Drink water and eat zinc

Drinking a lot of water is always necessary. It will not just help in lymphocyte count but it will also help in countering various other health conditions. Along with it, you should also consume zinc by eating oysters, almonds as well as peanuts.

How to prevent a low lymphocyte count?

prevent a low lymphocyte count

It is considered that AIDS is one of the most common problem which can cause low lymphocytes count in the body. Follow some steps to prevent the autoimmune diseases.

  • Always use protection and practice safe sex.
  • Avoid injecting drugs by yourself and sharing of needles with each other.

By Prajakt K.