What is the role of complete blood count (CBC) in the diagnosis of bipolar affective disorder (manic-depressive illness)?

Updated: May 30, 2019
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

A complete blood count (CBC) with differential is used to rule out anemia as a cause of depression in bipolar disorder, or manic-depressive illness (MDI). Treatment, especially with certain anticonvulsants, may depress the bone marrow—hence the need to check the red blood cell (RBC) and white blood cell (WBC) counts for signs of bone marrow suppression.


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