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is a condition that causes you to have a low number of neutrophils in your blood. Neutrophils are a type of white blood cell made in the bone marrow. They help your body fight infection and bacteria.

Signs and symptoms of neutropenia:

You may have no signs or symptoms, or you may have any of the following:

  • Fever
  • Bruises, splotchy red spots, or sores on your skin
  • Mouth sores
  • Sinus infections
  • Anal or rectal sores
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Cough or wheezing

Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) if:

  • You have a fever of 100.4°F (38°C) for more than 1 hour.
  • You have a fever of 101°F (38.3°C) or higher once.

Call your doctor if:

  • You have fever or chills.
  • You have a new cough.
  • You have a sore throat or a new mouth sore.
  • You have redness or swelling any place on your body.
  • You have pain in your abdomen or rectum.
  • You have burning or pain when you urinate.
  • You have diarrhea.
  • You are more tired or forgetful than usual.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Treatment for neutropenia

will depend on the cause. Your healthcare provider will treat any infections you have. You may also need to change the foods you eat to make sure you get the right nutrition. You may need to stop taking medicines that can cause neutropenia. You may also receive growth factor to help stimulate your bone marrow to make more neutrophils.

Prevent infections:

  • Wash your hands before you prepare or eat food, and after you use the bathroom.
  • Bathe daily. If you shave, use an electric razor to prevent nicks in your skin.
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush , and brush your teeth gently 2 times each day. Ask your healthcare provider if it is okay for you to gently floss daily.
  • Avoid crowds and anyone who may be sick. Avoid contact with animal saliva, urine, or feces. Have someone clean your cat's litter box or fish tank, or pick up after your dog.
  • Wash raw fruits and vegetables thoroughly. Cook meats and eggs thoroughly.
  • Use stool softeners if you are constipated. Do not use suppositories or enemas. Constipation, suppositories, and enemas can cause a tear in your rectum. This allows germs to get in and can increase your risk for infection.
  • Ask about vaccines. The flu or pneumonia vaccines may help prevent infection and illness.

Follow up with your doctor as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Neutropenia (Ambulatory Care)

Associated drugs

IBM Watson Micromedex

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.