A bone lesion biopsy is the removal of a piece of bone or bone marrow for examination.
I Would Like to Learn About:
How the Test is Performed
The test is done in the following way:
An x-ray, CT or MRI scan is likely used to guide the exact placement of the biopsy instrument.
The health care provider applies a numbing medicine (local anesthetic) to the area.
A small cut is then made in the skin.
A special drill needle is often used. This needle is gently inserted through the cut, then pushed and twisted into the bone.
Once the sample is obtained, the needle is twisted out.
Pressure is applied to the site. Once bleeding stops, stitches are applied, and covered with a bandage.
The sample is sent to a lab for examination.
Bone biopsy may also be done under general anesthesia to remove a larger sample. Then surgery to remove the bone can be done if the biopsy exam shows that there is an abnormal growth or cancer.
How to Prepare for the Test
Follow your provider's instructions on how to prepare. This may include not eating and drinking for several hours before the procedure.
How the Test will Feel
With a needle biopsy, you may feel some discomfort and pressure, even though a local anesthetic is used. You must remain still during the procedure.
After the biopsy, the area may be sore or tender for several days.
Why the Test is Performed
The most common reasons for bone lesion biopsy are to tell the difference between cancerous and noncancerous bone tumors and to identify other bone or bone marrow problems. It may be performed on people with bone pain and tenderness, particularly if x-ray, CT scan, or other testing reveals a problem.
No abnormal bone tissue is found.
What Abnormal Results Mean
An abnormal result may be any of the following problems.
C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, San Francisco, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.