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Is raised total leukocyte count (TLC) level normal during pregnancy?

Q: I am 6 months and 3 weeks pregnant. I have a high TLC of 16,000 for the past 1 month. My urine, stool, blood culture, vaginal swab, TORCH, HbA1c results are clear. Should I get anymore tests done? Is the raised TLC normal during pregnancy? My gynaecologist says that I should let it be since TLC increases during pregnancy. I am 37 years old. Will the raised count have any effect on the fetus?

A:Physiological leukocytosis refers to a total leukocyte count above the normal, without the association of any known disease process. It is documented that the number of leukocytes in peripheral blood increases considerably during pregnancy. The WBC count may increase up to 20,000/µL (or even higher during labour and following delivery). The total mass of WBCs also increases to fill the increased blood volume. The reason for the increase in WBCs is unknown but is probably a hormonal response.


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