Low Lymphocytes during Pregnancy – Should You Be Worried?

Low Lymphocytes during Pregnancy - Should You Be Worried?

Finding out the normal range of lymphocytes in pregnancy is not as easy as it seems. The normal range of lymphocytes for a normal adult and a pregnant woman is different, which further changes as the pregnancy progresses. However, it is important for a pregnant woman to find out and understand when the levels are low and take corrective action if required.

What Are Lymphocytes?

Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cells (WBCs), which is a part of the immune system in the body. These cells work in tandem with the WBC to protect the body against specific attacks. The antibodies generated by the lymphocytes help the body fight against different types of viruses as well as cells that can turn out tumorous.

These are generated within the bone marrow of the body. For a child in the womb, these are produced in the form of non-differentiated liver cells below the mother’s heart. Extensive immune system development and signature recognition of external attacks depend primarily on these. Within them, the B-type lymphocytes help recognize which cells are harmful and need antibodies. The T-type cells work in controlling the immune response of the body, triggering it when necessary and reducing it when not needed.

What Is the Normal Range of Lymphocytes in Blood?

The range of lymphocytes is an important means of detecting if your body is performing appropriately or if it is under attack from harmful microbes. The normal range varies according to the presence and absence of pregnancy, as well as the different stages of it.

  • A normal adult range of lymphocytes lies between 0.7 – 4.6×109 per litre.
  • The initial trimester of pregnancy starts pushing the lower end higher at 1.1 – 3.6×109 per litre.
  • The second trimester of pregnancy establishes the normal range to be as 0.9 – 3.9×109 per litre.
  • The final pregnancy trimester maintains a similar range between 1 – 3.6×109 per litre.

What Are the Possible Causes of Decreased Level of Lymphocytes during Pregnancy?

The reduction of lymphocyte levels in a pregnant woman is a natural consequence of conception and is a totally normal body process. When conception occurs and the embryo is awaiting implantation into the uterus, the body makes adjustments within itself to allow this to happen without any hurdles. For the human body, an external embryo within itself is an alien entity. It is quite natural for the immune system to observe it as something harmful and reject it. Therefore, the body ends up suppressing the immune system’s response by cutting down the lymphocyte count, which allows the embryo to implant successfully and grow into a foetus. Even during this stage, the body still keeps the mother protected. Other entities such as neutrophils are activated, which temporarily take on the duties of protecting the body from external attacks.

The lymphocyte levels in the body tend to remain in the range as described earlier. However, if the levels seem to be outside that normal range in that particular stage of pregnancy, it could definitely be indicative of other harmful causes such as…

  • A Rhesus conflict, which when occurs within the baby and the mother, may cause lymphocyte proportions to be abnormal.
  • The tissues of the child and the mother may not be compatible with each other or might be paired with the onset of allergic reactions due to a variety of reasons.
  • Presence of an infection which could be as dangerous as HIV.
  • A chronic condition of problems such as gastritis, bladder inflammation.
  • A deficiency of various minerals and vitamins, leaving the body at weak nutrition levels.
  • A propensity for obesity as well as constant use of drugs or alcohol.

Are There Any Complications Caused Due to Reduced Lymphocytes in Pregnant Women?

The human body is able to balance itself appropriately in order to adapt to external or internal changes and keep the process functioning as they are. While the suppression of lymphocytes is met with the generation of neutrophils and other entities to protect the body, the protection offered by them is not always successful. Following are the consequences of reduced lymphocytes in a pregnant woman:

  • The very reduction of lymphocytes in the body can weaken the body of the mother, which is already combating with a number of changes internally.
  • This weakness can make the body extra sensitive and vulnerable to external changes such as temperature fluctuations, atmospheric changes, air pollution, and many others.
  • Furthermore, since the guards are down, any presence of the simplest microbes, which could be easily combated by a full-fledged immune system, can find their way within the body and lead to an illness or an infection.

A tired pregnant woman

Can You Prevent the Consequences?

The reduction of lymphocytes during pregnancy cannot be changed since it is a natural process and is extremely necessary for the baby to find a place for itself within the mother’s womb. But before trying to get pregnant, it is highly recommended for the partners to get fully examined and check the presence of any diseases which ought to be treated immediately, as the presence of any disease can put an extra load on the fledgeling foetus and the weak body to fight those infections along with keeping the body safe.

Supplements in the form of diet adjustments or medicines would be recommended to keep the mother’s body at healthy since the baby will be tapping into every energy reserve from the mother. Certain lifestyle adjustments and avoiding going to places where chances of infection are high can keep you safe at all times.

Tips to Boost Immunity During Pregnancy

To boost your immunity during pregnancy, here are a few tips that you should follow:

  • It is important to not be worried about a low lymphocyte count when pregnancy sets in. It is quite natural and should be checked by the doctor for the same.
  • A balanced diet consisting of cereals, vegetables, fruits, and lean meat can keep the mother healthy and the baby safe.
  • Along with that, supplemental drugs might be recommended for supporting the immune system such as Alphabet, Pregnavit, Elevit and many others.

Pregnancy will bring a lot of changes in your body but nothing that you cannot handle. While the body does need to reduce the immunity to help the child find a home, the same can be done without exposing your body to external harm. Appropriate measures can help keep the both of you safe.

Also Read: Complete Blood Count Test during Pregnancy