Disorders of Neutrophil Function

Some patients have normal numbers of neutrophils but have recurrent, severe, or unusual infections and therefore have a neutrophil function disorder. Defects in function include neutrophil adherence, chemotaxis, degranulation, and metabolic problems. The evaluation is complex but involves family history, complete examination of peripheral smear, and determination of immunoglobulin and complement levels. Neutrophil function can be evaluated by the nitroblue tet-razolium (NBT) test and other assays. Chronic granulomatous disease and severe G6PD deficiency may be found in this evaluation. Referral to a specialist is usually necessary to investigate disorders of neutrophil function adequately.

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