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A 52-year-old member asked:

what is the typical pain level of a bone marrow biopsy?

3 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Luis Villaplana
Internal Medicine 35 years experience
Pain: 5-7/10. Pain perception is different from patient to patient though, so keep that in mind.
Dr. Vikram Patel
Pain Management 37 years experience
Bone arrow biopsy: The bones are covered with a tissue called periosteum which has pain nerve fibres and is very sensitive to any injury. The doctor should numb the skin as well as this deeper layer. The needle is large but proper numbing would eliminate most of the pain. Once the numbing wears off, pain returns in a few hours but should be tolerable. Ice or tylenol (acetaminophen) will be helpful.
Dr. Amy Deeken
Pathology 20 years experience
Depends...: There should be numbing medicine placed in the skin and periosteum (covering around the bone. If given enough time to work, putting the needle in these tissues should be relatively painless. However, when the bone marrow is aspirated out, it creates a vacuum inside the bone which can cause a sharp pain to shoot down your leg. It only lasts a few seconds, but it is the one part that can't numb.

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Last updated Jan 5, 2019
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