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How to Calculate ANC

A complete blood count, or CBC, can help you determine your ANC, or absolute neutrophil count. The ANC represents the number of neutrophils -- the white blood cells that fight infection.


  • Step 1: Multiply the WBC by the total percentage of polys and bands using a calculator. A WBC of 200 multiplied by the total percentage of .15 of polys and bands equals an ANC of 30.
  • Step 2: Know that the normal neutrophil count range varies between laboratories, but if you have 1,000 neutrophils or less you may have neutropenia and be at greater risk for getting a serious infection. Knowing your ANC can help you take any necessary precautions.
  • FACT: There are several types of white blood cells in the human body and between 45 and 70 percent of all white blood cells are neutrophils.
  • Step 3: Add the percentages of the polys and bands. If your polys are .10 and your bands are .05, then the total percentage would be .15.
  • Step 4: Note the number of bands, which are young polys, also listed as a percentage, such as .05.
  • TIP: You can also use a calculator to multiply the WBC by 1,000.
  • Step 5: Find the number of polys, which are mature neutrophils, noted as a percentage. For example, if the lab sheet lists your polys as .10, it is 10 percent.
  • Step 6: Determine the number of white blood cells, or WBC. For example, if the WBC reads .2 on the lab sheet, move the decimal three places to the right to establish the number of white blood cells, which would be 200.

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