Bone Marrow Biopsy

What is the test?

Doctors can diagnose many problems that cause anemia, some infections, and some kinds of leukemia or lymphoma cancers by examining a sample of your bone marrow. Bone marrow is the tissue where blood cells are made. A bone marrow biopsy is the procedure to collect such a sample. It is done using a needle inserted through the outside surface of a bone and into the middle of the bone, where the marrow is.

How do I prepare for the test?

You will need to sign a consent form giving your doctor permission to perform this test. Because you will probably receive some pain medicines or anti-anxiety medications that can make you drowsy, you will need to arrange a ride home.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had an allergic reaction to lidocaine or the numbing medicine used at the dentist's office. Also talk with your doctor before the test if you are taking insulin, or if you take aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or other medicines that affect blood clotting. It may be necessary to stop or adjust the dose of these medicines before your test.

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