What is bone marrow and what does it do?
Bone marrow is the soft, spongy material at the center of the bone that produces many of the important components of blood, such as white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets.
How is a bone marrow aspiration and biopsy done?
The patient is placed in a prone position (on his/her stomach with the head turned to the side) or on their side. The physician will inject the biopsy site (usually the right or left hip) with a local anesthetic. This anesthetic will cause a temporary numbing of the site that will go away in approximately 4 hours. The doctor the inserts a special hollow needle into the bone and suctions out a small amount of the bone marrow and then, with the same needle, removes a tiny piece of bone. The marrow and bone specimens are sent to a pathologist for analysis and are prepared in our in-house laboratory for your hematologist or oncologist to review.
Why is it necessary to have a bone marrow biopsy?
This test is done to diagnose conditions of the blood and blood-making tissues.
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