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Bone marrow test: Care at home

Article Translations: (Spanish)

What is a bone marrow test?

During a bone marrow test, a sample of marrow (a substance inside the bone) is taken. The bone marrow is checked for diseases of the blood, tumors, or certain infections. Ask the doctor or nurse practitioner when to expect the test results.

A doctor or nurse practitioner will do the bone marrow test. It is usually done on the hip bone. Medicine will be given for anesthesia or sedation.

What can I expect after the bone marrow test?

Your child will return to the patient care area. A bandage may be on the bone marrow site to stop any bleeding. There may be some discomfort.

The nurses will watch your child for any bleeding, discomfort, or problems from anesthesia or sedation.

How should I care for my child at home?

If you see any new blood, press down firmly on the area for 5 minutes using a clean, dry washcloth. If bleeding continues, call the doctor.

If there is a bandage, be sure to remove it by the next morning. If it falls off before then, leave it off.

Check the site daily for redness, swelling, or bleeding until it heals.

Your child may resume normal activity as able. If an activity causes pain, avoid it. Give pain medicine as directed. Pain should not worsen or be severe.

When should I call the doctor?

  • Bleeding that does not stop after 5 minutes of pressure.
  • Redness, swelling, or drainage from the site.
  • Temperature higher than 101.5° F (38.4° C)


This sheet is not specific to your child, but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call the clinic.

Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota
Patient/Family Education
2525 Chicago Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55404
Last reviewed 8/2015 ©Copyright

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This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Minnesota Family Resource Center library, or visit

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