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What does a high ESR count indicate?

Friday, 04 September 2009
Answered by: Dr Monica Mahajan
Senior Consultant, Internal Medicine, Max Hospital, New Delhi

Q. My 13 years old cousin is suffering from fever; at any time in a day her temperature will be 104 degree F. The doctor did an ESR test and found it to be 95 mm (1st h). After medication, it reached 120. So, he asked her to stay in the hospital and is giving some injections since two days. She is normal otherwise without any pains and problems. Her haemoglobin level is 11 g/dl. What is the problem with her? What treatment should she take? Please advise.

A.  Your cousin has high ESR as a part of the fever. ESR is a marker of infection/inflammation in the body and increases in many infectious as well as non-infectious conditions. It does not indicate the actual diagnosis. So the cause of the fever will have to be determined by other tests including blood tests, X-Rays, ultrasound etc. The treatment will be planned accordingly. I am sure your doctor will update you regarding the cause of fever and high ESR once these reports are available.

A.  Your cousin has high ESR as a part of the fever. ESR is a marker of infection/inflammation in the body and increases in many infectious as well as non-infectious conditions. It does not indicate the actual diagnosis. So the cause of the fever will have to be determined by other tests including blood tests, X-Rays, ultrasound etc. The treatment will be planned accordingly. I am sure your doctor will update you regarding the cause of fever and high ESR once these reports are available.

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