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Lab Manual for Moffitt-Long and Mount Zion

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Helper, Suppressor and Total T cells

Item Value
Approval req'd? No
Available Stat? No
Test code THI
Test group CD
Performed by Immunology
In House Availability Monday-Saturday (day shift)
Method Flow cytometry
Collection Instructions Keep sample at room temperature
Container type Lavender top
Amount to Collect 3 mL blood
Sample type EDTA whole blood
Preferred volume 3 mL blood
UCSF Rejection Criteria Refrigerated sample received. Sample > 48 hours old when received
Processing notes DO NOT refrigerate, store at room temperature and ship to China Basin.

Order CBCD if not already ordered on the same sample.
Units % and x106cells/L
Normal range
Population % Lymphs Absolute count
CD4 T Cells 31-60% 410-1590 x106cells/L
CD8 T Cells 13-41% 190-1140 x106cells/L
CD3 (total T) Cells 55-84% 690-2540 x106cells/L


CD4 / CD8 (Helper/Supressor) ratio: 0.8-4.2

Note: Reference values are for ≥ 18 year olds. For pediatric ranges please see:

Kotylo, PA, et al. 1993. Reference ranges for Lymphocyte Subsets in Pediatric Patients. Am. J. Clin. Pathol 100:111-115

Lin, S-C., et al. 1998. Age-Related Changes in Blood Lymphocytes of Chinese Children. Ped. Allergy Immunol. 9:215-220

Melaranci, C., et al. 1992. T. Cell Subpopulations in Pediatric Healthy Children: age-normal values. J. Clin. Lab. Immunol. 30:143-149
Synonyms CD4; CD8; CD3; Inducer; Cytotoxic; T cells; CD4/CD8; flow cytometry
Turn around times 2-3 days
Additional information Both CD3 (total % T cells), CD3/CD4 (% Helper-Inducer T cells) and CD3/CD8 (% Suppressor-Cytotoxic T cells) are reported as well as the CD4/CD8 ratio.

Absolute cell counts require a CBC w/Differential on the same sample, which is ordered and charged separately if not otherwise available.

Note: In a legal opinion given to the Medical Center, attempting to circumvent a patient's refusal of HIV testing by using CD4 in its place is an (illegal) invasion of the patient's privacy unless a consent for HIV Testing is obtained.

CD4 results are automatically forwarded to California public health per regulations. However, this does not absolve the ordering provider from any additional reporting if such is required.
LOINC code 17146-2
Last Updated 11/21/2011 5:39:12 PM
Entry Number 612
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