Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Help with my Daughters blood test results

Hi my daughters results are back and I have some concerns can someone please advise, she is 18 and been feeling unwell lately.

Serum folate= 2.6 ug/L

Erythrocyte sedimentation =31mm/h

monocyte count = 0.9 10*9/L

Can anyone explain what these mean and what they should be.

Concerned mum Thank you

11 Replies

Bit difficult to comment without the reference ranges - though the folate levels do look very low.

This article may help on the other cell counts


on the print out ive got it states serum folate=2.6ug/L

low replete 5.4-20.0ug/L


Deficient <3.4ug/L

If that makes sense to you, your a better person than me I am so confused.

Thank you


you are being given 3 ranges and told what the results mean if they fall into those ranges.  At 2.6 the result fits into the third of the rangers - under 3.4ug/L.

This means that your daughter does not have enough folate in her blood - and she needs a lot more.

Low folate will mean amongst other things that she is unable to process B12 properly which will make her more susceptible to infections ... and if I understand the other results correctly they are indicative of an infection.

This is a link to the BCSH guidelines on folate (B9) and cobalamin (B12) deficiencies.

see page 16 which is where all the details of folate deficiency start - which includes the following:

Severe folate deficiency can cause pancytopenia and megaloblastic anaemia.

It also states that diagnosing folate deficiency means looking at symptoms

p22-23 list some potential causes


Thank you ill take a look.


The key line here is:

Deficient<3.4 ug/L

The < symbol means 'less than'. So it's saying that any value less than 3.4 micrograms of folate per litre of blood is deficient.

That means your value of 2.6ug/L is quite a bit lower than it should be.

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The  Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate is approx. [ 5 to 15 ]   so at 31 it suggests some inflammation, 


Thank you would this be serious at all.


It is possible that this is just from the folate deficiency. When I was anaemic (iron deficiency) my ESR was a similar level.


my esr was raised when I had a high ferrtin  count, which I was told  is another sign of inflammation  


Not necessarily,  A rise in the ESR  can happen with a cold, and sore throat,   however a raise in the ESR only tells you there is some inflammation, but not where it is, so the Dr. would go by the symptoms, 



Has she had a ferritin test, a B12 test and a full blood count (FBC) as well?

Are you in the UK?

Important info in Management section in link above about folate deficiency. I have read that treating folate deficiency without treating a co-existing B12 deficiency can cause problems.

Useful UK B12 websites


PAS tel. 01656 769 717

I am not a medic, just a patient who has struggled to get a diagnosis.

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