A patient is immunocompromised when one of the parts of their immune system is not functioning for any of a number of reasons. Immunocompromised patients are very susceptible to infection and are vulnerable to the rapid spread of diseases such as cancer. There can be several reasons why a patient might be immunocompromised, but in any event it is the result of a lack of white blood cells or the inability of a patient to produce antibodies. Some conditions that result in a patient being immunocompromised are:

Radiation sickness - from radiation destroying the bone marrow that produces white blood cells.

AIDS - from the destruction of T-cells by the HIV virus.

In addition, transplant patients must have their immune system suppressed by drugs to prevent the immune system from destroying the transplanted organ.

See also Immunosuppresants

Immunodeficiency at Wikipedia

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