Blood tests are relatively common in the medical world. They’re an effective way to find out what’s going on in the body. For example, the results can determine if there are issues with your vital organs or even the blood itself. There are several types of lab tests that can be done including an mpv blood test. This is a test to find out the average size of your platelets. The average is taken in part because there can be up to 450,000 platelets in just one one-millionth of a liter of blood. The average provides a snapshot of all your blood.
Many of us have heard of blood platelets but might be unsure about what exactly they are. For now, let’s just say they’re blood cells that help to stop bleeding. Platelets only make up about 20% of the total size of red blood cells. Even though they’re tiny they’re very important in the blood’s function. That’s why it’s important to have tests on them to help learn about the average size, for example. If you or someone you know needs a test for platelet volume it’s good to know what it means if this figure is higher or lower than overage.
What Are MPV Tests?
The term MPV is short for “mean platelet volume.” Let’s start by talking about the different kinds of cells in the human body. The main ones include white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. These cells are very tiny but can provide doctors with some very helpful information.
When physicians want to learn about particular kinds of cells in the blood, they order labs to conduct a complete blood count (CBC). This isn’t literally a count of how many blood cells your body has.
It’s instead a group of tests that includes an MPV test. This test measures your platelets’ average size. It’s a little different than a platelet count test, which actually measures how many platelets are inside a blood sample.
The main job of platelets is for blood-clotting. Let’s say you get a small cut. It’s the platelets that stick together so the bleeding stops. Sometimes problems with platelets can be a sign of health problems.
You might be wondering: if you have a high or low MPV does that mean you have health problems? That might be the case. However, doctors will compare the results with other tests they run like the number of platelets you have.
In many cases, doctors order MPV blood tests to determine if you need more tests. So, if the number is higher or lower than normal then they’ll want other things tested to find out if there are any major problems.
In fact, you shouldn’t panic if your results are higher or lower than normal. It could be the result of things like high-intensity exercise programs or just living in an area with a high altitude.
This is why it’s important to review the MPV test results with your doctor. He/She will be able to sort things out for you and explain the meaning of the results.
High MPV Blood Test
Here are some of the possible results from your MPV blood test:
1 High MPV
If the figure is high then the meaning is your blood platelets are bigger than average. This can have different meanings and sometimes shows that your body is making too many of them.
Here’s how it works. The body’s bone marrow makes platelets then releases them into the blood. Big platelets are usually a sign the blood marrow recently released them into the bloodstream. Meanwhile, small platelets usually have been in the blood for a couple of days.
One possibility is a high MPV and low platelet count. In other words you have big platelets but fewer of them. This is a sign the bone marrow might be quickly making platelets. The result might be the body’s old platelets are getting destroyed and the bone marrow is attempting to fix the problem.
A high MPV is sometimes linked to cancer. Keep in mind it doesn’t always mean you have cancer. What happens is the body produces more platelets when they meet stuff made by the cancer tumors.
It’s important to keep in mind there’s no guarantee a high MPV means you have cancer. Your doctor might order more blood tests to find out if there are other signs.
The blood platelets can cause cancer to spread other parts of the body. They can also boost tumor growth. That’s why it’s important to run more tests.
You should also note that high MPV is linked to different kinds of cancer. They include lung, colon, stomach, kidney, and breast.
3. Other Causes
If you have a high MPV this could also be the result of various other conditions. They include:
- Heart disease
- Over-active thyroid
- High blood pressure
- Vitamin D deficiency
As with cancer, there’s a chance you don’t have any of these conditions.
What Does Low MPV Mean?
While a high MPV can be a warning sign of certain health issues that’s also true of a low MPV. The meaning of this result is that the blood platelets are tinier than normal. These platelets are usually older. The result is your bone marrow isn’t making enough new ones.
Low MPV could result from various things. They include stuff used in chemotherapy, bowel disease, and a low number of red blood cells.
If you want to boost your platelet count there are various types of foods you could eat to achieve that goal.
Who wouldn’t want an excuse for eating more pumpkin pie? Studies show this food can help your platelet count to spike. This orange food is high in Vitamin A like papaya, carrots, and sweet potatoes. It helps to support your body’s platelet development.
2. Folate foods
This includes different options like spinach, oranges, raisins, beans, and fortified cereals. If you have a folate deficiency then your body also might produce fewer platelets.
If you have a potassium deficiency then you could have a problem with blood clotting because proteins aren’t activated. That’s why you should consider eating these foods to boost platelet count. Some options include lettuce, spinach, and parsley. Green leafy veggies are an excellent source.
This tropical fruit not only is tasty but also very healthy. There are various ways to consume this fruit including fresh, juice, and tea.
This is one of the best sources for many kinds of nutrients like calcium. It works with potassium and certain protein to boost your platelets.
Besides milk, you could also pick cheese or yogurt to boost your platelets. All of these foods not only help with platelet count but also blood clotting. So, you should consider more milk if you learn about a low platelet count via mpv blood test.