White blood cells are meant to help the body fight off foreign invaders, but these helpful immune system cells can actually be quite problematic if they occur in excessive amounts. Elevated white blood cell counts may be caused by an infection, autoimmune disorder, or type of cancer, and it can keep the body from functioning properly. Here are a few common signs that a person has an abnormally high white blood cell count.
Fainting. A big issue with high white blood cell counts is that the excessive number of white blood cells can essentially crowd out red blood cells in the blood. Red blood cells are necessary for carrying oxygen to other parts of the body, so without them, people may feel fatigued, get dizzy, and faint. Not all people with high white blood cell counts end up fainting. It is more common in those with high white blood cell levels due to cancer instead of high counts due to basic infections. Fainting due to high levels of white blood cells is normally temporary. People tend to recover consciousness fairly rapidly.