The bone marrow report gives information about a number of factors related to the marrow:
Is the normal proportion of cells present?:
The normal marrow contains different types of cells. Some become red cells in blood, some white cells and some platelets. In some disorders the proportion of these cells in marrow are different from normal. This can be verified by a bone marrow aspiration test.
Are there any abnormal marrow cells present?:
Cells that develop into different blood cells go through a process of development in the bone marrow. Immature cells gradually change into mature cells that are released in blood. In some marrow disorders and in leukemias the number of immature cells, or blast cells, increase substantially in number. In another cancer called multiple myeloma, cells called plasma cells increase greatly in number within the marrow. Some lymphomas can turn aggressive into a leukemia-like illness. This can show up in a bone marrow test.
Are there any metastatic cells present?:
Lymphomas and some other cancers can spread to the bone marrow, as well as to other organs of the body. This is a sign of metastatic disease. A bone marrow test can identify cancer cells in the marrow and diagnose a metastasis.