I have recently been treated for a herniated disk with sciatica pain. I took cortisone injections this week. The next day I had a followup with primary dr. as a checkup type thing. I was complaining of some shortness of breath, and mile uncomfortableness. Nothing else going on. Other than that of course I have had back pain and hip pain.
My WBC came back at 22,800. I wasn't told what the differential was, so I am not sure if this helps indicate anything, but the nurse said there was no other sign of infection or problems. She said the dr. wanted to re-run the test and do a uranalysis.
So, I went in and did that and sitting here awaiting results. Questions..
1. Could the steroid injection cause an increase this much?
2. It UA is clear, and level is still increased, what is next step?
3. Assuming UA is clear, how far should my WBC drop to feel comfortable about continuing additional tests?
4. And, if levels are still high, which tests should I have?
The white count is high. Hopefully it is a response to the cortisone and will go down. Basically it could be an inflammatory reaction to what you are being treated for and the Cortisone is increaseing the response of the white blood cells. As for the next step in testing, the doctors will be the best advisor since they will know the differential and what needs to be tested next.
Merimac, thanks for your reply. I am worried and waiting is tough. I wasn't sure if a reaction to the inflammation and cortisone could actually make it this high, or not. I just wouldn't think it would make it that high. Do you know how long it would take to for the coristone to decrease the wbc if it was going to? I am supposed to get more injections this week, but was wondering if the level is still elevated to skip it and wait to see if it goes down, or if it takes longer.
The amount of time it takes is of course going to be related to the reason for the inflammation and a general rule of thumb about White cell counts is that they vary from day to day. The White Cells go in and out of the blood stream, back and forth to the tissues and organs and back into the blood stream depending on the time of day, the amount of inflammation to fight and or are triggered by stress or viruses to increase or decrease in numbers. The doctors can look at whether the monocytes, granulocytes, or lymphocytes are the largest group and what it means. Eosinophils and Basophils being elevated of course can mean allergies or parasites are involved so, knowing the actual white cell count does not mean a lot without a differential. So, here is hoping that you will be doing well soon.