Understanding your results

Common terms and numbers you may see on a CBC report and what they mean are on this chart:

Test NameUnits*Normal values#Comments
WBC (white blood cells)x 1000/mm35–10Number of infection-fighting cells
RBC (red blood cells)x 1,000,000/mm34.2–6.1Number of RBCs
Hgb (hemoglobin)g/dL12–18Measure of RBCs, which carry oxygen and carbon dioxide
Hct (hematocrit)%37–52Percentage of blood made up of RBCs
Plt (platelets)x 1,000/mm3150–450Number of platelets. This number helps show risk of bleeding
BMI (Body Mass Index)kg/m218-25Classification of body weight
BP (Blood pressure)mmHg<120 systolic (top number); <80 diastolic (bottom number)Force used by the hearth to circulate blood
Glucose (sugar)mmol<5.6

Level of sugar in blood

Cholesterolmmol<5.2Level of fat in blood 

Note that results are often given in short form, as shown on this table. For instance, a WBC result may be shown as 6.2 rather than 6,200, which is why the Units column shows multiplying by 1000 (x 1000), sometimes abbreviated as K.

RBCs are often shown as multiples of a million, sometimes abbreviated as M. The /mm3 stands for cubic millimeter, which is the same as µL (microliter). Grams is shown by the letter g, and dL means deciliter.

# These numbers range vary somewhat among labs. By getting a copy, you can also see what the normal ranges are for the lab that tested your blood and where your numbers fall within that range.

About Us

At The Life Project, we study the causes of cancer, cardiovascular illnesses and diabetes to better understand, diagnose, treat and prevent these diseases in Jamaica and the wider Caribbean.


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We are studying the causes of cancer and cardiovascular illnesses & diabetes to better understand, how to prevent, diagnose & treat black patients in Jamaica and the rest of the Caribbean.