Hematologists provide care for both non-cancerous blood disorders and blood cancers. Non-cancerous blood disorders include anemia, hemophilia, and bleeding and clotting disorders. Blood cancers include leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.
Some of the laboratory tests we use for diagnosis and management of blood disorders include:
- Complete blood count (CBC) to help diagnose anemia and certain blood cancers, and to monitor infection
- Platelet count to diagnose and monitor bleeding and clotting disorders
- Prothrombin time (PT) to evaluate bleeding and clotting disorders and monitor anti-clotting therapy
- Urinalysis to diagnose kidney and urinary tract infections
Bone Marrow Aspiration and Biopsy
Your doctor may request a bone marrow test to find the reason for many blood disorders or to find out if cancer or infection has spread to the bone marrow (fluid and cells inside the bone). The stem cells in your bone marrow are responsible for producing red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.
A bone marrow biopsy removes a small amount of bone and a small amount of fluid and cells from inside the bone. A bone marrow aspiration removes only the marrow.
A bone marrow aspiration can also be done to collect bone marrow for medical procedures, such as stem cell transplant or chromosomal analysis. For a stem cell transplant, bone marrow aspiration will be done at several places on the body (generally from the back of the pelvic bone) to remove enough bone marrow cells for the transplant to work.
Causes of Bleeding Disorders
The majority of bleeding disorders are inherited, which means they’re passed from a parent to their child. Some disorders may develop as a result of other conditions, such as liver disease, low red blood cell count, vitamin K deficiency, or certain medications.