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Laboratory evaluation of neutrophil disorders

Thomas D Coates, MD
Section Editor
Laurence A Boxer, MD
Deputy Editor
Jennifer S Tirnauer, MD


The polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN) is the primary defense against bacterial and fungal invasion. Defects of neutrophil number and function commonly present with recurrent and severe bacterial and fungal infections, often involving the skin and respiratory tract as well as deep tissue sites.

This topic reviews the laboratory evaluation of neutropenia and neutrophil dysfunction. The overall approach to the patient with neutropenia, including a discussion of indications for bone marrow evaluation and the individual neutrophil function defects, are discussed separately:

Neutropenia (children) – (See "Overview of neutropenia in children and adolescents".)

Neutropenia (adults) – (See "Approach to the adult with unexplained neutropenia".)

Neutrophil dysfunction – (See "Primary disorders of phagocytic function: An overview".)


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Literature review current through: Sep 2015. | This topic last updated: Aug 10, 2015.
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  2. GeneDX: www.genedx.com (Accessed on June 02, 2011).
  3. Correlagen Diagnostics: www.correlagen.com (Accessed on June 02, 2011).
  4. In the United States, Children's Hospitals with expertise in diagnostic testing for primary immunodeficiencies include Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center (www.cincinnatichildrens.org), Children's Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee (www.chw.org) and Seattle Children's Hospital (www.seattlechildrens.org).