Should I be worried if a doctor asks for a bone marrow biopsy?

BMBThe indications, contraindications, technique, and complications of bone marrow aspiration and biopsy are to be carefully known by both the patents and the clinicians.

Bone marrow testing is useful in the diagnosis and staging of haematological disease, as well as in the assessment of overall bone marrow cellularity, if need is compelling and are likely to provide enough evidence of a condition

Because of easy accessibility, aspiration, biopsy, and culture of the bone marrow may also play a role in the assessment of patients with fever of undetermined origin as well as in the diagnosis of various storage and infiltrative disorders.

The decision to perform a bone marrow evaluation must be made after the critical assessment of pertinent information available from the history, physical, and laboratory studies, including a review of the complete blood count (CBC) and examination of the peripheral blood smear.

As stated above, bone marrow examination can be a useful tool in the diagnosis and staging of various haematological diseases and in the assessment of bone marrow cellularity, cellular morphology, and maturation.

Highly specialized testing, such as cytogenetic, immunophenotypic, and molecular analyses, can be performed on these specimens, and have become critically important in establishing certain diagnoses, especially the leukemias and lymphomas.

The most commonly encountered complications include pain, discomfort, and/or bleeding at the site of the procedure. Complications of sternal aspiration can be serious and are discussed in detail above.

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