Low Sed Rate? | ProHealth Fibromyalgia, ME/CFS and Lyme Disease Forums

Low Sed Rate?

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I know this has probably been addressed before but does anyone have any comments on my latest blood tests? The report shows a low sed rate of 4 and says average is between 10 and 20. My doctor hasn't called so I assume he will discuss this with me on my next visit but I am curious to know if this means anything.

This was my first visit to a rheumatologist who said that I do have fibromyalgia and ran lots of blood tests. None of the other tests appeared to be abnormal.


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A low sed rate is an indication of deformed red blood cells. Dr. Cheney says that CFS patients have some of the lowest sed rates he's ever seen. (Mine is zero.)

He also says that the ones with the lowest sed rates tend to have the greatest degree of pain.

His theory is that nitric oxide is the problem. He says that the best scavenger of nitric oxide is hemoglobin, which is the "red" in the red blood cells - it's a protein that transports oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.

He says that when the hemoglobin scavenges the nitric oxide, the red blood cells bend and become deformed. This causes pain as they can no longer get through the capillaries as easily.

This makes total sense to me, and may explain the "boiling blood" sensation that I seem to get.


New Member
Petcat - low sed rate could also be an indication of rheumatoid. My mother has it and her sed rate is very low. Ask your doctor about it. From what my mom says about her symptoms compared to mine from fibro, they are very similar, yet she has the deformity in her joints and she is on specific meds for rheumatoid arthritis. And being both are auto-immune diseases, it is something you might want to have ruled out.



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Hello petcat,

Yes this has been discussed before; mine was high at one time and I was scared; didn't know what to do.

If you will, type in, at the top left, Search By, and type in "sed rate" then click on "title". Mine was high and I was afraid.

You will see a lot of information there.



New Member
Some Lyme doctors say a sed rate below five indicates a stealth infection, like Lyme or mycoplasma. This is esp. true if your lymphocytes are low and your neutrophils are high also.

Re: red blood cells. My Sed Rate is 5, and has been 4 or 5 throughout my illness. I had a dark electron microscopy done which showed 85% of my red cells were deformed by free readical damage. My Naturopath said it was because I was "doing sugar", and made me promise to stop all sugars for two months.

I thought she was nuts, but another dark electron microscopy after two months with no sugar showed no more deformities at all, and my Sed Rate went up to 12 for the first and only time in 20 years of this illness. I did not stick with this...my sweet tooth was too powerful, but I only allow myself one sugar treat per week, and I use Stevia for sweetening the rest of the time.