Bone marrow examination: for metastatic tumor: aspirate and biopsy

Cancer. 1977 Nov;40(5):2317-21. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(197711)40:5<2317::aid-cncr2820400546>;2-z.


A 6-year experience with bone marrow aspirates and biopsies (96 cases) positive for metastatic carcinoma is reviewed. Marrow examination detected secondary carcinoma in 58 cases (60%) despite negative roentgenographic and/or bone scan examinations. Breast carcinoma was the most frequent primary site. The bone marrow biopsy was superior to the aspirate in finding carcinoma (97% vs. 72%). However, in an occasional case, tumor was found only in aspirate preparations. Both procedures should be considered complementary and are recommended in the marrow evaluation of patients with carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Bone Marrow Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Bone Marrow Examination / methods*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / diagnosis*
  • Suction