Blood test

Normal MCHC level in the blood

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Normal MCHC level in the blood

What is the normal range of MCHC?

Men: 32 - 36 g/dl
Women: 32 - 36 g/dl
Children from 16 to 18 years old: 32 - 36 g/dl
Children from 6 to 16 years old: 32 - 36 g/dl
Children from 1 to 6 years old: 31 - 35 g/dl
Children from 6 months old to 1 year old: 32 - 36 g/dl
Babies from 2 months to 6 months old: 31 - 35 g/dl
Babies from 2 weeks old to 2 months old: 32 - 36 g/dl
Newborns:: 33 - 37 g/dl

Why normal levels can differ across different labs?

Each laboratory must establish its own normal ranges for MCHC in the blood. These ranges depend on the makeup of the local population, the technologies used and the accuracy of the measurement. There may be also slight differences in the normal levels according to age, gender, race or ethnic origin, geographic region, diet, type of sample and other relevant status. Your doctor will study the results along with your medical record, screenings, physical condition, symptoms and any other relevant information about your situation.

Some conditions may alter the normal ranges:

  • If there is a type of autoantibodies in the blood called cold agglutinins MCHC may be spuriously increased. The presence of cold agglutinin autoantibodies is one of the most frequent cases of a false positive result for MCHC and the values shown may be over 50 or 60 g/dl.
  • In the existence of hyperlipidemia, there may be also a spurious increase in the MCHC level.

What is MCHC?

MCHC is the acronym of Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration. The MCHC measures the average concentration of Hb (hemoglobin) in the RBCs and, as such, represents the ratio of the weight of Hb to the volume of the erythrocyte.

Hemoglobin is the main protein present in the RBCs (Red Blood Cell) and it has the role to carry oxygen to the body tissues and transport back the carbon dioxide to be exhaled in the respiratory process. A hemoglobin level below normal range is called anemia.

What is MCHC test used for?

The MCHC test has a limited diagnostic value. It can be clinically useful in elucidating the etiology of some type of anemia (where hemoglobin values are low). It usually serves as a confirmation of the diagnosis obtained by other parameters such as hemoglobin, hematocrit, MCV, MCH or RDW.

Decreased MCHC values signify that a unit volume of packed RBCs contains less hemoglobin than normal. The main cause for a low value of MCHC is iron deficiency anemia. However, only in 20% of the people with iron-deficiency anemia the MCHC will be lower than normal range.

Increased MCHC values occur mainly in hereditary spherocytosis, sickle cell disease and homozygous hemoglobin C disease.

Finally, MCHC is useful to test the electronic cell counters. The MCHC cannot be greater than 37 g/dL because the RBC cannot accommodate more than 37 g/dL. If cell counters show an incoherent high value it is necessary to check for errors in calculation and a laboratory quality control is usually required.

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

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Which values are considered a normal MCHC level in the blood?

The following values are considered to be normal values:

IMPORTANT: These levels are expressed in g/dl. 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.

MCHC
Normality
31 g/dl31.1 g/dl31.2 g/dl31.3 g/dl31.4 g/dl31.5 g/dl31.6 g/dl31.7 g/dl
31.8 g/dl31.9 g/dl32 g/dl32.1 g/dl32.2 g/dl32.3 g/dl32.4 g/dl32.5 g/dl
32.6 g/dl32.7 g/dl32.8 g/dl32.9 g/dl33 g/dl33.1 g/dl33.2 g/dl33.3 g/dl
33.4 g/dl33.5 g/dl33.6 g/dl33.7 g/dl33.8 g/dl33.9 g/dl34 g/dl34.1 g/dl
34.2 g/dl34.3 g/dl34.4 g/dl34.5 g/dl34.6 g/dl34.7 g/dl34.8 g/dl34.9 g/dl
35 g/dl35.1 g/dl35.2 g/dl35.3 g/dl35.4 g/dl35.5 g/dl35.6 g/dl35.7 g/dl
35.8 g/dl35.9 g/dl36 g/dl     
Last update: 11/01/2021

Bibliography

  • 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 99. 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.

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