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Reference Intervals for Eight Measurands of the Blood Count in a Large Population Based Study by Till Ittermann, Markus Roser, Graham Wood, Helma Preez, Jan Lüdemann, Henry Völzke, Matthias Nauck

Background: The blood count is widely used in clinical practice. Well defined reference intervals for each measurand are essential for correct clinical interpretation of results. Most previous studies have not been populationbased. We therefore calculated reference intervals for several hematological measurands from a sample of the general adult population of Northeastern Germany.
Methods and Results: We used data from 2967 healthy individuals recruited for the population-based Study of Health in Pomerania (SHIP). Reference intervals were calculated according to the guidelines of the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) using the bootstrap method for the age range from 20 to 79 years and, in addition, stratified according to age and gender with both bootstrap and quantile regression procedures. Reference ranges for erythrocytes, hemoglobin and hematocrit increased with age in women but decreased in men.
Conclusions: Our reference intervals were lower than those previously published for erythrocytes, hemoglobin, hematocrit and leukocytes but higher for Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV) and Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH). Different laboratory methods and study populations may lead to disparity in results.

DOI: Clin. Lab. 2010;56:9-19