Also known as a haematology profile, the FBC or CBC provides information on white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets. Certain aspects of it may be prone to clotting in a postal sample.
White Blood Cell Count
The WBC (white blood cell) count is a common test within a health assessment and is a measure of your body's ability to fight infection. A normal WBC level can be interpreted as a sign that the first line of defence against invasion by bacteria or other disease causing organisms is intact and functioning. Moderately elevated white cell counts are a sign of acute infection, while very high counts of abnormal white cells are encountered with leukaemia (a relatively rare form of blood cancer).
Red Blood Cell Count
The RBC (red blood cell) count is the number of red blood cells present. It can vary considerably, and a marginally low or high health screening reading may not imply a problem. Significantly reduced numbers within any health check can be associated with anaemia (a deficiency in red cell production, or excessive loss of blood), and very high numbers are seen in polycythaemia (a condition which can be caused by smoking, living at altitude or just because the bone marrow makes too many red cells).