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What Are the Risks of Bone Marrow Tests?

Bone marrow tests are safe for most people. Complications are rare, but can occur. For example, some people develop bleeding or infections.

To prevent bleeding from the site where the needle was inserted, don't do any heavy lifting or vigorous exercise for a few days after the tests.

To prevent infections, don't shower or bathe for the first day after the tests. After 24 hours, you can take off the bandage. Call your doctor if you develop a fever, have a lot of pain, or see redness, swelling, or discharge at the site. These are signs of infection.

Expect mild discomfort for about a week. Your doctor may tell you to take an over-the-counter pain medicine.

Bone marrow tests might not be safe for people who have certain bleeding disorders, such as hemophilia. Your doctor can tell you whether bone marrow tests are safe for you.

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August 1, 2009