Blood test

High MCH level in the blood

Blood test
High MCH level in the blood

What is high MCH called?

  • Hyperchromia

What is the normal MCH level in the blood?

If you need to know which are the MCH reference ranges or you require more information about the role of MCH in the blood you can visit: Normal MCH level in the blood

What does a high MCH mean?

When MCH values are above the normal range is called hyperchromia and it means that the RBC (red blood cells) have more hemoglobin than normal. It gives RBC a deeper red color than normal.

The main cause of hyperchromia is megaloblastic anemia due to a deficiency of vitamin B12 or folic acid. It comes with anemia (hemoglobin low) and macrocytosis (MCV high).

Hyperchromia or a high MCH level in the blood means:

  • Mild hyperchromia (33 - 37 pg in adults) :

    A mild hyperchromia may be due to some temporary cause such as alcohol intake or certain drugs.

    It may be also due to anemia related to liver diseases like cirrhosis or hepatitis C.

    In any case, a visit to your doctor is recommended to keep a follow-up.

  • Moderate hyperchromia (37 - 45 pg in adults) :

    A moderate hyperchromia is characteristic of megaloblastic anemia. It comes along with macrocytosis (a MCV higher than normal).

    Megaloblastic anemia is due to vitamin B12 or folic acid deficiency. The treatment should prescribe by your doctor.

  • Severe hyperchromia (> 45 pg in adults):

    A severe hyperchromia is seen in the case of pernicious anemia, a type of megaloblastic anemia in which vitamin B12 is not properly absorbed in the stomach.

    In case of autoimmune hemolytic anemia with agglutinins, the automatic electronic equipment used to measure the parameter in the blood test may show values around 60 or 70 pg but they are not real.

Which factors can raise the MCH in a blood test?

There are some health circumstances or drugs than can raise your MCH level in the blood:

  • Alcohol
  • Chemotherapy
  • Drugs
    • Sex hormones
      • Estrogens

Which diseases can raise your MCH in a blood test?

The most common diseases why the MCH can be higher than normal are:

  • Megaloblastic anemia
  • Pernicious anemia
  • Hepatitis C
  • Hepatic cirrhosis

What can I do to lower the MCH?

A high value of MCH in the blood is related to macrocytic anemia. Your doctor should recommend you:

  • Reduce the intake of alcohol and some drugs that may harm the liver.
  • Increase the intake of folic acid and vitamin B12.

Where can I find more information about MCH level in the blood?

You can visit our pages about:

Which values are considered a high MCH level in the blood?

The following values are considered to be above the normal range:

IMPORTANT: These levels are expressed in pg (picograms). They are an example of a healthy woman of about 45 years old with no known disease and not taking any medication. The ranges can be different depending on the laboratory or on your personal circumstances.

Mild hyperchromia
33.1 pg33.2 pg33.3 pg33.4 pg33.5 pg33.6 pg33.7 pg33.8 pg
33.9 pg34 pg34.1 pg34.2 pg34.3 pg34.4 pg34.5 pg34.6 pg
34.7 pg34.8 pg34.9 pg35 pg35.1 pg35.2 pg35.3 pg35.4 pg
35.5 pg35.6 pg35.7 pg35.8 pg35.9 pg36 pg36.1 pg36.2 pg
36.3 pg36.4 pg36.5 pg36.6 pg36.7 pg36.8 pg36.9 pg37 pg
Moderate hyperchromia
37.1 pg37.2 pg37.3 pg37.4 pg37.5 pg37.6 pg37.7 pg37.8 pg
37.9 pg38 pg38.1 pg38.2 pg38.3 pg38.4 pg38.5 pg38.6 pg
38.7 pg38.8 pg38.9 pg39 pg39.1 pg39.2 pg39.3 pg39.4 pg
39.5 pg39.6 pg39.7 pg39.8 pg39.9 pg40 pg40.1 pg40.2 pg
40.3 pg40.4 pg40.5 pg40.6 pg40.7 pg40.8 pg40.9 pg41 pg
41.1 pg41.2 pg41.3 pg41.4 pg41.5 pg41.6 pg41.7 pg41.8 pg
41.9 pg42 pg42.1 pg42.2 pg42.3 pg42.4 pg42.5 pg42.6 pg
42.7 pg42.8 pg42.9 pg43 pg43.1 pg43.2 pg43.3 pg43.4 pg
43.5 pg43.6 pg43.7 pg43.8 pg43.9 pg44 pg44.1 pg44.2 pg
44.3 pg44.4 pg44.5 pg44.6 pg44.7 pg44.8 pg44.9 pg45 pg
Severe hyperchromia
45.1 pg45.2 pg45.3 pg45.4 pg45.5 pg45.6 pg45.7 pg45.8 pg
45.9 pg46 pg46.1 pg46.2 pg46.3 pg46.4 pg46.5 pg46.6 pg
46.7 pg46.8 pg46.9 pg47 pg47.1 pg47.2 pg47.3 pg47.4 pg
47.5 pg47.6 pg47.7 pg47.8 pg47.9 pg48 pg48.1 pg48.2 pg
48.3 pg48.4 pg48.5 pg48.6 pg48.7 pg48.8 pg48.9 pg49 pg
49.1 pg49.2 pg49.3 pg49.4 pg49.5 pg49.6 pg49.7 pg49.8 pg
49.9 pg50 pg50.1 pg50.2 pg50.3 pg50.4 pg50.5 pg50.6 pg
50.7 pg50.8 pg50.9 pg51 pg51.1 pg51.2 pg51.3 pg51.4 pg
51.5 pg51.6 pg51.7 pg51.8 pg51.9 pg52 pg52.1 pg52.2 pg
52.3 pg52.4 pg52.5 pg52.6 pg52.7 pg52.8 pg52.9 pg53 pg
53.1 pg53.2 pg53.3 pg53.4 pg53.5 pg53.6 pg53.7 pg53.8 pg
53.9 pg54 pg54.1 pg54.2 pg54.3 pg54.4 pg54.5 pg54.6 pg
54.7 pg54.8 pg54.9 pg55 pg    
Last update: 07/01/2021


  • Concise Book of Medical Laboratory Technology: Methods and Interpretations. 2nd Edition. 2015. Ramnik Sood. ISBN: 978-93-5152-333-8. Pag. 217.
  • A Manual of Laboratory and Diagnostic Test. 9th edition. Frances Fischbach. Marshall B. Dunning III. 2014. Pag 100. ISBN-10: 1451190891.
  • Laboratory tests and diagnostic procedures with nursing diagnoses (8th ed), Jane Vincent Corbett, Angela Denise Banks, ISBN: 978-0-13-237332-6, Pag. 35.

Show more

Rating Overview

Share your thoughts about this content

E-mail (Optional):
Add a review