Before you can begin to abstract from the hematology reports, you must be aware of the terms you will encounter and of their significance. Following are definitions of terms which you will encounter frequently.
Red Blood Cells
Hematocrit measures the volume of erythrocytes. It is expressed as a percentage of the volume of whole blood.
White Blood Cells
Leukocytes (white blood cells) are of two main types-granulocytes or granular leukocytes (containing granules in their cytoplasm) and agranular leukocytes (lacking granules in their cytoplasm).
Granulocytes or granular leukocytes can be further subdivided (based on the staining properties of the granules) into:
Neutrophils (purple) - 40-60% of all leukocytes
Eosinophils (red) - 1-3% of all leukocytes
Basophils (blue) - 0-1% of all leukocytes
A neutrophil may be further specified as segmented (SEGS), banded (STABS), or juvenile (a metamyelocyte).
Agranular leukocytes may be further subdivided into two types:
Monocytes - 4-8% of all leukocytes
Lymphocytes - 20-40% of all leukocytes
Platelets (thrombocytes) are tiny cells or discs whose primary function is hemostasis (clotting of blood).