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Bone marrow biopsies performed by both the powered OnControl drill device and the Jamshidi needle produce adequate specimens
  1. Sarika Jain1,
  2. Mark Enzerra2,
  3. Rohtesh S Mehta2,
  4. Roy Smith2,
  5. Miroslav Djokic1
  1. 1Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
  2. 2Department of Hemato-Oncology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Miroslav Djokic, Department of Pathology, UPMC Presbyterian, 200 Lothrop Street, Rm G-316, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA; djokicm{at}


Objective The aim of our study was to evaluate the adequacy and quality of the bone marrow (BM) obtained by OnControl powered drill (P-group) and to compare it with manual procedure (M-group).

Design Retrospective analysis was done on 75 BM specimens; Jamshidi needle (n=44) and OnControl (n=31). Biopsy length after fixation, evaluable marrow length and total area, and fragmentation, aspiration and marrow dropout artefacts were compared.

Results Biopsies were sufficient for diagnosis in 38/44 cases (86%) in the M-group and in 26/31 cases (83%) in the P-group. The most common reason for suboptimal/inadequate biopsies was subcortical specimens (4/6) in the M-group and aspiration artefact (5/5) in the P-group. Average length after fixation, evaluable marrow length, evaluable marrow area was comparable. Aspiration artefact was minimal (<10%) in the majority of BM samples in the M-group (31/44), while 25/31 BM in the P-group showed >10% aspiration artefact, p<0.0001.

Conclusions Our study suggests that quality of biopsy cylinder and adequacy rate of the biopsy is comparable between both devices. OnControl device showed more aspiration artefact.


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  • Handling editor Mary Frances McMullin

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval Institutional Review Board of University of Pittsburgh.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.